JG (The Introverted Reader)'s Reviews > Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood

Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
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Marjane Satrapi lived in Iran before, during, and after the cultural revolution in Iran. Here, she sets down her memories of what life was like for a child during that time.

I just read Art Spiegelman’s Maus about a month ago and loved it. I thought I would go ahead and give this other highly-acclaimed graphic novel/memoir a try. I enjoyed it, if that’s the correct word, but it didn’t affect me quite the same way Maus did. I’m not too sure why. Maybe it’s because I know more about WWII than I do about Iranian history. All I know about Iran is what I learned from Reading Lolita In Tehran. So I felt a little confused about what was going on. As an American, life before the revolution didn’t look too bad. At least the women didn’t have to wear the veil. Later, it did become clear that there were problems that weren’t readily apparent. I think the other thing is that Spiegelman spread out the violence in Maus and made it more effective. In Persepolis, it just kept coming and I think I became a little desensitized to it.

I do feel like I learned more about another country, and that’s always a good thing. Maybe my one little piece of understanding won’t make much of a difference to the world, but maybe if we could all just try to have a little more understanding, things would change for the better. There’s my bit of philosophy for the day.

Having said that, I did come away with a greater appreciation for where I live. I don’t have to walk in fear of someone arresting me because of what I’m wearing, or the music I’m listening to, or even vocalizing my thoughts. We aren’t perfect by any means, but we have it good. I can’t imagine living in a place where I have to make the decisions that Marjane’s family has to make. I don’t want to spoil anything, so I’ll leave it at that.

I loved the way little Marjane thought. The book wasn’t really funny, but some of the things she said and thought had me laughing out loud. These did provide much-needed breaks from the serious, scary tone of the rest of the book.

Overall, I highly recommend this. It gives some insight into a culture that’s very different from our own. Satrapi makes her point effectively, but I personally wasn’t too clear on what was happening at the beginning. I wish I’d had the second volume nearby when I finished—this one ends on a bit of a cliffhanger.
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Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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message 1: by Becky (new)

Becky Good review JG. Fiona recently finished Maus, and I recommended this to her based on other people saying that it was similar.

I hope to read this one soon, as I've been reading a lot about the Middle East lately. :)

JG (The Introverted Reader) Thanks, Becky! I think you'll like it. I'll be reading the second one very soon.

Fiona Thought I felt my ears burning. I'm waiting for the library to bring it in.

JG (The Introverted Reader) Mine had the first but not the second. What kind of sense does that make? But I've already requested and received the next one.

message 5: by Becky (new)

Becky Fiona wrote: "Thought I felt my ears burning. I'm waiting for the library to bring it in."

Is that like a Spidey-sense? Only, uhh, Tweety-sense? :P

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