As I mentioned in my post discussing Banned Books Week, I decided to read a banned book whose banning had been successfully fought by the people. This year I read Persepolis, a graphic biography by Marjane Satrapi. It was an incredible book, and one I think definitely belongs in our schools. With everything that is going on in the Middle East, it is important for the next generation to get viewpoints from those that lived it, as opposed to what is just written in a textbook.
Yes, this is another “comic book,” which is really a misnomer (graphic novel is really what you should be calling it). And, yes, I think everyone should read this. Even if you are an adult. Come to think of it, especially if you are an adult. We could all use some viewpoints other than our own. And not only does Satrapi offer her own memories of what life was like in Iran (both before and during the revolution), she reminds us of truths that we all must remember. And she does so with a humor and wit that made it such a great read (to me, anyway).
Persepolis tells the story of a young girl living through the Iranian revolution. From personal rebellion to fear to living your dreams, the black and white images capture the challenges mixing a free and rebellious home life with the suddenly restrictive and at times terrifying public life. It’s totally worth reading. There’s also a sequel where Satrapi finally returns to Iran as an adult. And there’s even a french movie that brings the same black and white comic strip images to life. The trailer for the equally beautiful movie is below.