The vast majority of comics I’ve read and reviewed so far involve superheroes fighting off super villains in order to save their hometowns or possibly the world. Depends on the villain. Others involve fantasy worlds with colorful characters fighting some of the supernatural.
When Persepolis was suggested for my reading list, I remembered the title because it was always something friends felt I should read. While reading it I would post Instagram pictures of , I found a lot of friends mention that they read it for a class. Apparently I was behind in my required reading.
Persepolis is the memoir of Marjane Satrapi through the form of a comic. She catalogs her childhood growing up in Iran during the Revolution, followed by her time abroad in Vienna when her parents sent her away to finish her schooling. When her general education is complete, Satrapi returns to Iran and spends the rest of her time of the memoir in college readjusting to life in her home country.
This book gave me a lot of insight into a country I otherwise knew very little about except for the occasional news story and what I’ve looked up on my own. I’m ashamed that the United States’ education system does not teach about foreign countries very often, particularly those in the Middle East, other than to teach us about them as our enemy during different war periods.
Satrapi weaves such a beautiful story with her anecdotes that show the change Iran has during their revolution, and how those changes affect her childhood, education, and beyond. The country goes from having a lot of Western influence to closing itself off, and that change is evidenced by Satrapi’s memories.
It felt like such an honor and privilege to be taken along on the story of Satrapi’s life. There is so much to be learned from her experiences and surrounding support system. Whenever there was a poignant word of wisdom from Satrapi’s parents or grandmother, I always snapped a picture and put it on Instagram as a reminder of some of the lessons learned.
If you want to take a break from those superheroes and villain stories, and read a unique memoir, I recommend picking up a copy of Persepolis (look for the complete collection so that you have two volumes in one book).