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Persepolis: The Sheep
Transcript of Persepolis: The Sheep
This story is told using both images and words to recall the events from Marjane's life. It is in a comic book format. The frame that stood out to me was on page 70 when Marji was yelling at God. This frame stuck out to me because it shows how close Marji felt to Anoosh. He was the only man in her life that chose to tell her the truth. She felt like he always heard what she had to say. I believe everyone goes through this stage when undergoing loss. It is anger in a deity for allowing someone you loved so much to pass on. Without images, Persepolis would have no visual representations of the events. I feel the images are important to the story because they display the characters facial expressions, their body language and their chemistry with one another. You get a better sense of each character through the images. It also helps accurately portray the events. WIthout words, I feel the story would still be understandable. You would still be able to generally comprehend her experiences and main obstacles. The book would still be readable without words.
This story is important because this is the pivotal moment when she questioned her belief in God. Without this part the book itself would be demolished because we wouldn't witness the point when she lost her religion because of her uncle, and learn about all the other people who stood their ground in their beliefs and were punished and/or killed.
How is this story told: in images and words? Is there a particular frame that stands out? Why? How would this story be different without images? How would it be different without words?
How do you see
the shaping of Marji'ʼs
self in this story?
The question that I purpose is how would my own family react to these events. Would my family flee so that we could have the potential to be safe and escape the fear and danger? Or would we stay and try to get through it and hope that everything will turn out okay? With everything in her life going downhill it is natural for her to react with anger and sadness towards God. You think that he is supposed to stop these things from happening but he is not and she is really struggling with it. I would also feel that way as well when I think that I need guidance I would want to turn to him but when I feel that he has let me down I feel last as she does. With things going so wrong in her life, if it were my life I would be so lost.
In the beginning of the story, Marji was blinded from the truth. She went strictly by what she read in her text books and what her teacher told her. I would even say she was naive.Later on, she starts questioning her parents and others to find out the truth. She started finding herself with each question she asked and every answer she received. After being told something, she would decide whether or not she believed it or not. She developed into a savvy individual.
How do you connect to this story, even though your experiences might be, on the surface, quite different?
I too have, at some point of time, questioned what I believed in. Whether its being nice to people or believing the government actually cares for us. I connect to this story because losing someone I really loved almost made me question my religion, but unlike her I didn't.
Why is this story important to Marji's larger memoir? (How would the book be diminished if she left it out?)
What questions does this story spark in you (discuss in your group) – chose one of these to pose to the class.
Summary of the Sheep
Marji’s father and her uncle Anoosh points out that since half of Iran’s population is illiterate, the people cannot be united around Marxist ideals, so only nationalism or a religious ethic would work. The exit of the Shah and the abolition of the monarchy paved the way for Ayatollah Khomeini and the Islamic Republic in 1979. Marji’s world is altered forever by the creation of the republic. Many friends and family leave Iran for the USA and Europe. Her uncle Anoosh encourages everyone by telling them that it's just a period of transition and that everything will work out. However, they soon discover that their communist-revolutionary friends who had just been released from prison are either dead or fled. Anoosh was arrested and executed as a Russian spy leaving Marji in tears. He made another swan for her before his execution. She rejected her faith, lost and without bearing in the universe unable to think of anything worse – then bombs fell on Iran.