Cofounder of the Tudeh (Communist party) in Iran, Alavi was jailed during the 1930s for his political views. In 1945, when Germany was defeated at the end of World War II, Alavi lived in the Communist nation known as the German Democratic Republic, or East Germany. There he had both literary and academic standing. Alavi has written three volumes of short stories, a novel (Her Eyes), and, in German, a history of Persian literature. "The Lead Soldier" is considered one of the best short stories written in Farsi, the language of Iran.
Sadiq Chubak is one of the leading fiction writers in modern Persian, both in the critical and the popular sense. He was born into a merchant family in Bushihr on the Persian Gulf, an area that figures prominently in some of his stories. Later he moved to Shiraz. Although he was a protege of Sadiq Hidayat, Chubak has not imitated his mentor but is an innovator in his own right. His influences are both Eastern and Western, from the classical epics and poetry of Persia to European and American novelists such as James Joyce and William Faulkner. His writings include short stories, novels, and plays-rich in satire, but possessing a stark and gloomy tone. Favoring characters from the rural and urban underclasses, he is a master of colloquial language and has upset conservative readers and critics by his use of vulgarities. His social criticism is also strong. Chubak is a modernist writer who uses a minimum of description and places himself in the role of detached observer. Yet, a whole pattern of emotion and situation is revealed within it. Sadiq Chubak's first story collection appeared in 1945. He is perhaps best known for his novel Sang-i Sabur (The Patient Stone), published in 1966. Two other works for which he is especially well known are the novella Tangsir (translated as One Man and His Gun), based on an actual incident that took place in his hometown during his youth, and the one-act play Tup-i Elastik (The Rubber Ball), an extremely biting political satire.