AUTHOR: Marjane Satrapi
SUMMARY: Marjane tells the story of her childhood and teenage years living in Iran in the midst of the Islamic Revolution.
GENRE: Graphic Novel | Memoir | Coming of Age | Non-Fiction
NOTE: I read the The Complete Persepolis which has all the volumes in one book.
Persepolis shows why it is important to read about authors from different cultures from ours. Thanks to Marjane’s graphic memoir, I learned so much about Iran’s history and it’s people. In all honesty, I knew very little about Iran, Iranians, or the Islamic Revolution (or that there even was an Islamic Revolution). But after reading this I know about these things a lot more than I did before.
I think it’s an important read especially today that there are so many misconceptions about Muslims (although I think it’s changing… hopefully). Living in the US we’re so used to “othering” Muslims and this book more than anything shows that we’re more alike than we think. They care about their families, about their country’s future, and… Madonna (this was the 80s). It debunks the stereotype of the meek Muslim woman because the heroine of the story is strong, independent, intelligent, with her own values and political views. I would even go further to say she’s a feminist. Unfortunately, we don’t associate any of this with Muslim women, and thankfully Marjane Satrapi is changing that with this book.
Although the story talks about Iran’s history, it is heavily intertwined with Marjane’s life story. She is funny and candid in telling her story, making her quite relatable. She talks about growing up in a war-torn country and the helplessness feeling she got as a result. She also tells stories about her family, friendships, and boyfriends. There is something everyone can to relate to.
The art is simple and exclusively in black and white, however I really liked it. I also enjoyed the writing and the way she told her story, but for some reason or the other it didn’t captivate me a 100%. The only reason I didn’t give it a 5 is because I got bored halfway through and it took me a long time to finish it. I can blame this on school, work, reading slumps, myself, but I never felt that need to put aside everything else to read this (and trust me, I’ve had this happen to me before).
Other than that, I would still recommend this book because everything I mentioned before.