4. Make connections with other texts or concepts or events. Do you see any similarities between this material and other books that you have read? Does it bring to mind other issues or incidents or people or descriptions that are somehow related? Section: The Letter Important Quote: “When I went back to her room she was crying. We were not in the same social class, but at least we were in the same bed (p. 37). ” This section discusses Marjane’s friendship with their maid Mehri, who was ten when Majane was born.
Mehri was an extremely influential figure in Marjane’s childhood before the war, when she served as a nanny and confident, as well as a maid. This chapter discusses the time when Marjane was first beginning to understand the influence of an individual’s class on their social life. This understanding happens when Mehri is rejected by the boy she has fallen in love with because she is of a lower social class. After this revelation, the above quote is accompanied by a picture of Marjane comforting a crying Mehri.
The relationship between Marjane and Mehri somewhat reminds me of that between Amir and Hassan in The Kite Runner. However, there are apparent differences between their relationships, too. While Amir resents Hassan, Marjane only comforts Mehri. Additionally, while Amir and Hassan are raised as brothers (and are actually half brothers), Marjane and Mehri actually have a positive, sisterly relationship. The similarities in their relationships stems not only from them being raised as siblings, but from the distinction between their social classes.
Both Hassan and Mehri are from lower social class, portrayed as kind, empathetic characters, and ultimately rejected from the society which they wish to enter. Conversely, Amir and Marjane are both from distinguished families, of a higher social class, and writers. However, Marjane is incredibly brave and resilient, while Amir is not. Also, the relationship between Amir and Hassan is the focal point of The Kite Runner, whereas the relationship between Marjane and Mehri only serves to discuss the impact of social class in Iran and to further the development of Marjane’s characterization as a hopeful figure of justice.
First impressions: immediately after you finish reading a section of text, take some time to write down anything that comes to you in relation to the text-your initial reactions or responses. Just write freely. If the reading bores you, write that down. If you’re intrigued by certain statements, if you’re attracted to characters or issues or problems, write them down. Section: The Heroes This section is extremely contradictory when compared to the previous section, The Party, which focused on the importance of forgiveness, especially during a time of war.
Additionally, there is a panel in The Party where Marjane is depicted in front of her mirror telling herself that she has the power to forgive. The narration below explains that she now feels as though she has the power to actively do good within her life. Conversely, in The Heroes, there is again a panel where Marjane stands in front of her mirror (which is symbolic for her truly’seeing’ or understanding herself) and has a “diabolical feeling of power.
This power comes from learning about the torture her parent’s friends have undergone. Additionally, Marjane’s mother, who had told her to forgive in the previous section, now wishes death to all torturers. This juxtaposition illustrates the contradictory nature of people, especially during a time of crisis. Throughout this novel, so far, it seems as though a great deal of Marjane’s conflict comes from her trying to piece together right and wrong from the information she is given by her school and by her parents.
This is difficult amid the chaos of the revolution, especially as people change their beliefs in order to align themselves with the winning side, or adopt new morals because they are told to do so, or as a method of self preservation. This chapter was extremely hard for me to stomach, even though her parent’s friends are jovial about the torture they have suffered. 5. Jot down ideas, images, details, lines that strike you for whatever reason. Give yourself permission to speculate about them: why are they there? What do they add?
Why are they memorable? Do they have anything in common? Can you make an assertion about them? Full page spreads are used sparingly throughout Persepolis to place importance on a theme or event. In Persepolis 1, full page illustrations appear on pages forty-two, seventy-one, seventyseven, ninety-five, and one hundred sixteen. Each of these pages are incredibly important to the story, and have different purposes. Page forty-two has only one line: “The day he [the Shah] left, the entire country had the biggest celebration of its entire history.
The image depicts the people of Iran celebrating after the Shah leaves. This is worthy of a full paged image, not only because it represents a historic event, but because the jubilance and emotional connection Marjane and Iran had to this event is essential to the narrative of this chapter, if not the entire novel. If the first full page illustration is important to the historical aspect of the narrative, the second is intrinsically linked to Marjane’s personal narrative and development. This image occurs after Marjane’s uncle Anoosh is executed.
After losing her hero, and renouncing her God, Marjane appears to be floating in outer space, with a hole in her chest. This image evokes isolation. The text at the top of the image reads, “And so I was lost, without any bearings… what could be worse than that? ” The lower half of the image contains a speech bubble, presumably from Marjane’s parents which says, “Marji, run to the basement! We’re being bombed! ” At the bottom, the narration continues, “It was the beginning of the war. ” Again, the full page illustration is significant because of the extreme emotion in the scene.
Page seventy-seven revolves around the final trip that Marjane and her planned at the beginning of the war. In the image they are floating on a magic carpet to different landmarks in Spain and Italy. In the image, they are in a state of ignorant bliss before their return to Iran. After a dark section in the novel, and a hopeless previous full paged image, Satrapi breaks up the chaos with this scene, but also includes this as a means to juxtapose the political differences between Europe and Iran at this time.
The full page illustration on page ninety-five features the girls in Marjane’s class, adorned in veils and beating their chests to mourn the dead. This image represents the oppression of the new regime, and its effect on the children of Iran. Marjane is trying to remain positive while despair and danger surround her. Finally, the full page spread on page one hundred and sixteen occurs while Marjane is depicted descending the stairs to her basement while discussing the realities of war.
Symbolically, descending the stairs is descending further into the war, which is depicted in the full page panel on one hundred sixteen. In the image, Marjane appears on the stairs at both the top left and bottom right of the image. The majority of the image is composed of clouds of smoke, with explosions and violence. On the next page, Marjane declares the end of her childhood. As with the veil, the war oppresses Marjane and forces her to confront the realities of a harsher life, all the while witnessing tragedy.