PERSEPOLIS The Story of a Childhood.
Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi’s self portrait of daily life in Iran from the age of six until the age of fourteen, covering the period that saw the overthrow of the Shah’s regime, the triumph of the Islamic revolution, through to Iran/Iraq war, highlighting the devastating effect it had on the country & its people. We see this through the eyes of Marjane an intelligent and outspoken child of committed Marxists ("caviar leftists"), and the granddaughter of one of Iran’s last emperors. Drawn in black and white, the graphic novel found great popularity following it’s release, and was translated into several languages. The English edition was translated by Blake Ferris and Satrapi's husband, Mattias Ripa.
To be honest, I wasn’t sure if I would like this book, my first graphic novel & only picked as an experiment as to whether I’d like such books. As I child I loved comics, read all the usual ones, but I grew up and left such childish things behind (or so I thought). Recently, I’ve seen a lot of Graphic Novels & started to become intrigued by some of them, so after a quick check through the online library I saw this one (having seen the film reviewed on The Culture Show awhile ago).
And yet I loved it, raced through it like an Olympic athlete on banned substances, ruined my literary elitism amongst my work colleagues by going on about “some comic book” instead of the latest translated epic thousand page no one’s ever going to read book, that I normally carry like some badge of office. Loved the stark black and white imagery, the simplicity of the drawings, Loved the humour, the irony, the way the simple everyday reality was put across.
This child's eye view of dethroned Emperors, state sanctioned whippings, and heroes of the revolution allows us to learn, as she does, the history of this fascinating and closed country. Persepolis is a story about growing up and at the same time a reminder of the price paid by the individual during times of war and political oppression. This is a book of minor revolutions, small acts of rebellions, hidden beneath a regime known only for its rigid dogma and fundamentalism.
An Interview with Marjane Satrapi(bookSlut)