Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
This month, our Book Talk panel turns its attention to the popular autobiographical graphic novel Persepolis, by French-Iranian author Marjane Satrapi. 

With a title that references the ancient capital of the Persian empire, Persepolis is a coming-of-age tale that spans some of the most unsettled years in Iran's recent history. The first volume tells the story of Satrapi's life in Tehran from the ages of six to fourteen, during which time she experiences the Islamic Revolution and the devastating Iran-Iraq war. The second volume marks her adolescence in Vienna, and her struggle to reconcile the girl she was with the woman she is becoming.

Joining Sasha de Buyl are Damon Herd (@tickingboy), PhD researcher at the Scottish Centre for Comic Studies, and Mona Vaghefian (@mvaghefian), Communications Coordinator for the Edinburgh Iranian Festival.

The panel discusses the graphic novel's popularity with a wider audience, the new insights that the book offers on the history of Iran and the outsider perspective that Satrapi seems to experience in both Iran and Austria.

Through the podcast, they explore their reactions to the honesty with which Satrapi writes about her childhood self, the dual existence of the students during the Revolution and the book's place within the genre of autobiographical comic books, alongside such titles as Art Spiegelman's Maus and Joe Sacco's Palestine.

If you're reading, or have read, the book, what did you think? How do you think it contributes to the wider graphic novel genre?

Have you seen the animated film that was released in 2007 - and if so, does the story carry over from the book? We'd love to know what you thought - you can join the discussion in the comments below, or on Twitter @scottishbktrust.

Book Talk is also available on Soundcloud

BookTalk is produced by Colin Fraser of Culture Laser Productions.


Filed In: Book Talk Tags: graphic novel, book talk