Eid Mubarak to my Muslim friends and may your day be filled with love and happiness!
On this joyous occasion, I would like to share a recent find which was insightful and wonderfully hilarious though it left me feeling heavy-hearted after.
“Persepolis” is an autobiographical graphic novel series spanning over two books by Iranian-born French cartoonist and illustrator Marjane Satrapi. It is a satirical account of her childhood and young adult years during the Islamic Revolution in Iran. In case if you are wondering, this is exactly the same period depicted in Oscar-winning film “Argo” directed by Ben Affleck.
The beauty of this graphic novel is its multi-dimensionality where it introduces readers to Persian culture and Iranian history while triggering discussions for a host of topics including women’s rights, political oppression and the ethics of war. The turmoil roiling inside the illustrator as she was growing up was matched equally with the external turbulence of the socio-economic environment of the Islamic Revolution.
In spite of the somber political environment, the book was hilarious at times. Having drawn the comic in hindsight after moving to France, the book was laced with self-deprecating and critical thoughts about her younger self, her friends and relatives. It was these moments when sharing and airing her family’s dirty laundry in public that lightened the book’s overall mood.
As much as this is the story of Marjane Satrapi, it also represents the stories of many others where the tightening of religious laws struck fear and unsettled the hearts and minds of ordinary people.Even after being away from Iran for many years, Satrapi said in an interview that her affection “will always be with Iran.”
“I always say that if I were a man I might say that Iran is my mother and France is my wife. My mother, whether she’s crazy or not, I would die for her, no matter what she is my mother. She is me and I am her.”
Below are some pictures of the Eid festivities in my country. How do you celebrate Eid in your country? If you have read Persepolis, tell me what you think!