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January 02, 2013

Satrapi's _Persepolis_ and the Heroine's Journey

Image Source: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_abGRa1b0BJc/R0d9EPepmUI/AAAAAAAAGzo/gfqi9hvqUb0/s320/persepolis_extract2.jpg

Class,

In the comment box below, . . .

ENG 122 Students,

Per the instructions given to you in class . . .

. . . the note-taker/scribe from each group should retype the question your group discussed today in class and provide an answer with quotations from the text to support your answers. You MUST put the page number (or, paragraph number if there are no page numbers) in parentheses after any quotation used.

Enter your work on this text as prescribed in class. For example:

Remember: I have to "approve" all comments so you won't see it immediately after posting. After hitting submit, you should see a screen that confirms this.

We are beginning to use some concepts in our discussions that you may or may have had practice using before. I want to be sure that you have a clear understanding of the words we use in class (no more blank stares!) so be sure you are looking up words you don't feel you yet "own" (means, making it a part of your personal vocabulary) by utilizing your dictionaries to the fullest.

Dr. Hobbs

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Posted by lhobbs at January 2, 2013 10:17 AM

Readers' Comments:

20 October 2010

Please submit your extra-credit essay on the Hero's Journey in _Persepolis_ in the comment box below. Your essay will not appear in the comments below after you hit submit until I have approved it (which may take a few days).

OPTIONAL Extra Credit Assignment (See Handout Distributed in Class)

(If done to my satisfaction, your completion of this OPTIONAL assignment will replace your lowest reading check quiz score with a 25). Instructions:

1. See poster for the SLU Film Society’s screening of the film adaptation of Persepolis.
2. Attend the screening of the film Persepolis at 7:00pm Thursday, October 21, in Crawford Hall, Room 8.
3. Stay afterwards for the discussion of the film. Remember that a hero/heroine’s transformation (always required for a monomythic character to be considered a hero/heroine) is a kind of “personal development” (one of SLU’s core values).
4. In your journal, write a 1-2 page paper explaining the hero/heroine’s journey found in the narrative of the film Persepolis. Refer to the handouts I’ve given you in class. You’ll need to identify as many of the steps of the journey as you can (take notes* during the film, write the paper later, after the discussion). The paper should be in an essay form (not in the form of a list).
5. Type the paper and submit the paper digitally (by cutting and pasting) to my website, the English-blog. The link you’ll need to post it (as a comment) is:
http://www.english-blog.com/archives/2010/10/_persepolis__and_the_heros_journey.php

(or) just go to www.english-blog.com and click on the top blog entry which is about Persepolis and the Hero’s Journey. It will be due by the beginning of class on Tuesday (October 26, 2010). Be prepared to discuss it in class if you attended.

*Here are some things you should identify, in the order given, before you begin writing your paper:

A. The Hero/Heroine (Who is it?):
B. The Ordinary World (what/where is it?):
C. Explain the steps of the SEPARATION/DISCOVERY phase (See handouts)
D. What was the call to adventure?
E. Was there a refusal of the call? Where?:
F. Were there any helpers/aids/enablers to make the hero decide?
G. What/Where is the threshold (gate) into the special world?
H. The Special World (what/where is it?):
I. INITIAION/EXPLORATION PHASE/Road of Trials: What was the belly of the whale phase of this story?
J. Were there any enemies (or new friends) in the Initiation phase?
K. What was the supreme ordeal/climax/final battle in the initiation phase of the journey?:
L. Was there any useful gift/lessons learned in the initiation phase? If so, what?:
M. Was there a refusal of the return? If so, where?
N. In the return phase (crossing of the threshold out), was there a gatekeeper? Did the hero have a “magic flight” out or did they have to be rescued? Explain:
O. How did the hero change/transform into a “better” person either while in or after leaving the special world (this is the apotheosis stage)? Explain:
P. Did the hero “heal the land” in anyway?
Q. Is there any indication that the hero is now a master of two worlds? How?:
R. Is there any indication that the hero’s story is now over or that there might be some hint of prepping for a new adventure? If so, what, do you think from evidence given in the story, will be the hero’s new adventure? What’s his/her next challenge/adventure/quest?

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Brandon Medeiros
ENG 122 CA02
Dr. Hobbs
Persepolis

Persepolis is a French animated film about the life of Marjane Satrapi. The film begins with Marjane waiting in an airport, unable to board a plane to Iran. She begins to remember what her life was like growing up in Tehran. The beginning of the film flashes back in time to when she was 9 years old. Growing up Marjane was a young, curious, outspoken girl, with dreams of change for her country. Her parents are middle class workers who participate in rallies and protests, with hopes of change to their society. Marjane’s world as she knows it is falling apart around her. As a young child growing up during the Islamic revolution she does not fully understand the situation around her, but becomes increasingly interested in its future.
When Islamic Fundamentalists win the election, this forces the Iranian society into deep depression. People are ordered to obey to laws that strip away one’s independents. Women are required to dress appropriately with hijab’s or face execution. During her early childhood the Iran-Iraq war begins and Marjane see’s firsthand the terror and senseless killings around her. During this time she begins to rebel and find herself getting into trouble. As the war around her is starting to creep closer to her surroundings, Marjane find comfort in heavy metal music such as ABBA and Iron Maiden. She begins to dress in punk attire such as denim jackets that read “Punk is Ded”. Marjane rebellious attitude is a cry out for attention. Her feelings toward the situation is hard for her to process, listening to heavy metal helps her forget about what is happening around her.
Marjane parents are seeing a real change in her personality, so they decide to send her to a French Lycee in Vienna, Austria. This leads her to wonder why she needs to move. All she has ever known was her country and now she is forced to move. She becomes confused, after all her parents were always breaching and protesting themselves. At first she is reluctant to move but decides to follow her parent’s wishes. Upon arrival to a place where she can become free and find herself, she becomes increasingly isolated to her new foreign land. She has a hard time making friends and adjusting to a new country. She meets friends but is embarrassed to tell them where she is from. Marjane refuses to tell people who she is, hiding everything she is to her new friends. Ultimately she meets a guy that she falls passionately for. She finally feels that she belongs and enjoys his company. But what goes up must fall down. The man whom she thought was the perfect person; Marjane catches him cheating on her with another woman. This puts her into deep depression and Marjane finds herself living place to place, which leads her to become homeless. Living on the cold, wet streets Marjane becomes very sick and ultimately gets sick with bronchitis. This near death encounter and the conclusion of the war would mean she could safely return home. When she returns home her family is excited to hear all that has happened to her while being away. Reluctantly she obliges but feels depressed about her current situation. She feels tired and decides to go to sleep. While asleep she has a dream when God and Karl Marx speak to her. They both tell her how important she is and the importance to continue her life and dreams. After the dream she becomes more of the lively, ambitious girl she once was. She eventually goes back to school where she attends a university, starts to attend parties and eventually meets a fellow student which she begins a relationship with, and eventually marries.
Soon after she realizes that nothing much has changed. The Iranian society is still under control of every aspect of people’s way of life. She gets caught holding hands with her husband in public, which leads to a fine. Reverting back to her rebellious beliefs Marjane decides to speaks out in her universities forum about the sexiest double standards on public morality. During an encounter with a policeman Marjane finds herself falsely accusing a man sitting behind her of making obscene gestures. She returns home to talk with her grandmother about the way she fooled the policeman. She begins to tell her grandmother that she lied to save herself from punishment. Thinking her grandmother would side with her and congratulate her, her grandmother gets furious that she cost an innocent man his freedom. Her grandmother reminds Marjane that both her grandfather and uncle died supporting freedom and protecting the innocent people of Iran.
Everything around her is falling apart again. Her marriage is ending and a friend is killed when police raid a party. Her family decides the best thing for her is to leave again and never return. Marjane realizes that the best thing is to leave or face danger if she stays. Soon after departing, her grandmother dies. Being rejuvenated she leaves the airport and flags down a taxi. She sits in the back of the taxi and the driver says to her, where are you from? This time she speaks up and answers “Iran” with a big smile on her face. The movie ends with a memory of her grandmother placing jasmine in her bra to allow her to smell lovely every day.
The movie leaves people wondering what happens next. After watching I was curious to see what becomes of this girl. Being a foreign animated film with subtitles I had to pay close attention. The film was very comical and kept my attention until the end. Leaving I had a sense of connection with what she had gone through during her life. Many Americans take what they have for granted and become selfish. But after watching this film I have a greater appreciation for people in other counties, and what they have to go through.

Posted by: Brandon Medeiros at October 25, 2010 06:24 PM

Ryan Dailey
ENG 122
Persepolis
Persepolis tells the story of a girl, Marjane, that is struggling to find her identity while growing up in Iran. However, Marjane, or Marji, encounters many obstacles and has to overcome things that most youth have never had to deal with. Marji’s encounters with the harsh realities of life in Iran and her struggle of trying to find her identity elsewhere make up a fantastic, but not necessarily uplifting journey.
The heroine of the story is clearly Marji. Marji has a big heart and a loving family, but living under the oppression of Islamic fundamentalists, she rebels. However, Marji does not rebel using violence of force, she rebels in small ways such as listening to rock and roll (such as Iron Maiden in the scene where she buys tapes off of the street) and not following the dress code at school. All of these rules and guidelines make up the “Ordinary World” which, for Marji, is Iran.
There are several possible instances which could be looked at as “the call to adventure,” but I believe that the most prominent call to adventure was the incarceration of Marji’s uncle. Marji’s uncle was imprisoned because of his defiance of Iranian rules. Marji revered her uncle for being defiant, but was extremely saddened by his incarceration.
The imprisonment of Marji’s uncle prompted Marji to rebel further against Iranian authorities. However, Marji did go through a “refusal of the call”. Throughout the film, Marji is visited by God (presumably in her dreams). During these visits, God talks to Marji, once even asking her if she is “ready to be a prophet”. However, when God visits Marji following the incarceration of her uncle, she tells God to go away.
The “special world” in the film could be seen as Vienna, where Marji is sent to go to school. Marji’s parents believed that she would have a much brighter future in Vienna, but Marji has an extremely difficult time becoming accustomed to life away from Iran. It is in Vienna that Marji begins her “road of trials”. After having disputes with the nuns that were housing her, several boyfriends that break her heart, and difficulty discovering her identity, Marji ends up homeless and emaciated. This would be considered the “belly of the whale phase” in which things could not get any worse for Marji.
After her disaster in Vienna, Marji returns to Iran to bring order to her life. In the return phase, I would identify Marji’s grandmother as the gatekeeper. Marji returns to a cold Iran that did not mirror any of the good memories that she had as a child. The one person that seems to make her consistently happy is her grandmother. In this stage, the apotheosis stage, Marji is a much wiser person, but also seems very jaded and complacent.
The end of the film stops abruptly, leaving you wondering where Marji’s life journey will take her next. I believe that the story ends directly before Marji is to start a new adventure to establish herself as an adult.

Posted by: Ryan Dailey at October 25, 2010 08:04 PM

Bethany Penzo
Extra Credit Assignment
October 24, 2010

Persepolis
Saint Leo University on October 23 healed a special viewing of the film Persepolis. A 2007 French animated film that’s place during the 1970’s Iranian Revolution. That focuses on a young Muslin woman named Marjane Statrapi; who experienced the devastating effects of the new Islamic rule first hand. In order to better understand what this character had to endure the film goes back in time to the beginning of Marjane journey.
Marjane Statrapi was only a young girl when the Islamic Fundamentalist began taking over Iranian and although she was not more than eight-years old she understood what was happening around her. The films young heroin, Marjane was able to stand firm in refusing to conform to a corruptive society. Standing strong in what she believes to be right even though the pressure to adhere to was great.
A turning point in Persepolis came when Marjane was forced to leave her world. The world she had come to know was no longer safe and set forth to France. France became her new home or rather holding place away from her loved ones: Parents, Grandmother, friends and extra. For they all would remain in Iran unable to escape from the evil. Pushing the films forward in the pursuit for a better, happier, and safer live for Marjane. But this journey she had embarks on for a better life turns sour when getting kicked out of her place of residence and ends up on the cold, dark, and frightening streets of France. A closes call to death leads her to reject her call for a better life in France to return home.
Mr. and Mrs. Statrapi were very worried about their daughters well being agreed to let Marjane come back to her home land in Iran. Not expecting to a full grown young women standing in front of them are shocked. For their little Marjane has grown up to a beautiful twenty years old who was happy to be home. Surrounded my love ones Marjane still was expressing sins of depression and tries to commit suicide but luckily with the help of God begins to experience life again.
A wakened from here misery Marjane began taking classes at the Iran University. Where she soon realizes that Iran has changed a great deal from the time she was a little girl. The new Islamic rule had succeeded in passing the new laws. That gave very little right to the Muslim people especially there woman. She becoming outraged even more when the Careers begin taking away students rights in learning about Art and Literature Marjane stands up against their demand. Running home to tell her Grandmother of her eventful day of how she stud up to the Careers.
Marjane and her Grandmother become even closer as the years pass on. Her grandmother a wise, funny, and kind old women helps support her granddaughter in her chooses to marry, divorce, and stand up for what is wrong. The Grandmother even convinces Marjane that the best thing for her would be to movie back to France permanently this time. As the film end to a close the Grandmother dies but not before sending Marjane back to her journey in staying true to herself and never conforming to what you are told to do. Marjane takes her grandmothers advice and returns to France.

Posted by: Bethany Penzo at October 26, 2010 12:24 PM

Nick Campana
Persepolis
English 122 CA-01
In the movie Persepolis the heroine was a girl named Marji. Marji’s ordinary world was in Iran during a time of great corruption. What separated Marji was that her family were considered rebels and publically disagreed with the government. Marji joined her family’s views and even went as far as to terrorize the government official’s children. There was a call to action that came to Marji in a dream. God came to her in a dream and told her to forgive people and not to be such a rebel. There was a very strong refusal of the call after a fixed election lead to more strict laws on women and what they could wear. When the heroine heard this, she went back to her old rebel ways. There was some assist to the call to action before Marji’s refusal. A friend of hers was released from prison after serving a sentence for acting out against the government and tried to talk her out of making the same mistakes that he did. The crossing the threshold moment in this story was when Marji’s family sent her to Australia to go to school and to keep her from getting arrested. The road of trials and enemies she faced when she entered the new world was dealing with the new people in Australia. The students and nuns at her new school stereotyped Marji causing her in future social situations to lie about where she was from. From this experienced she learned that she would rather live a quieter life with her family in Iran then be forced to live anywhere else because of her actions. There was no refusal for Marji to leave the new world and return to Iran. Marji actually need to be saved because she was homeless and sick. When she returned home she had another visited from god in her dreams that acted as a meeting with goddess moment. After this dream, Marji was awakened from her depression and had a new energy and excitement towards life. Marji was not a master of two worlds but her trip through the new world taught her how to be a master of her old world. If the movie continued Marji’s new adventure would be finding a way back to Iran to visit her family after she left again.

Posted by: Nicholas Campana at October 26, 2010 02:56 PM

"Persepolis" is a touching story that revolves around Marjane Satrapi. It is the story of a whole generation of Iranian seeing through the eyes of a girl. Marjane is young precocious girl who has an early age is caught in the net of the Islāmic revolution. Through propaganda at her school, Marjane sees the Iranian royal family as divinely chosen. During the beginning of the revolution, Marjane’s parents finally explained to her the origin of the rulers. Furthermore, Marjane has since become a very outspoken girl against this system.

Through the young eyes of Marjane, we see the misery and hardship of a nation. The people’s hopes dashed as fundamentalists take power. Marjane’s uncle is sent to prison again, while being once very outspoken against the Shah’s oppression. This new oppressors forced men and women to be subject to religious fundamentalism, while imprisoning any dissenters. This situation went against Marjane’s beliefs, and she even became more outspoken. While there is a banned on foreign influence, Marjane discovers musical bands like Iron Maiden and ABBA under the complicit eyes of her mother.

Marjane has developed such a boldness resulting from her life experience, that her parents decide she would be safer outside the country. Being such, an outspoken kid did not fit well with the new religious fundamentalist. Therefore, at age fourteen, they make the difficult decision to send her to school in Austria. This turning point in Marjane’s life marks her initiation stage. She started to get a glimpse at the outside world, a world where she can speak her mind freely. Nevertheless, she is confronted to a world where too much freedom can be as dangerous as the lack of it. While in the outside world, Marjane first encounters rejection. Although, she finally made some friends, Marjane often had to hide her real origin. One of the biggest ordeals Marjane had to face was sentimental. Marjane gains acceptance overtime and even experienced love. The relation ended terribly wrong, and sent her life downhill. At first Marjane refused to go back home and tried to face her calamity on her own. At the end, she had to ask her parents for help. While going back home she had to face an officer at the immigration, this was the first encounter of Marjane with the fundamentalist republic. Marjane was asking quickly to properly arrange her scarf. This gatekeeper clearly gave Marjane a glimpse of what to expect of her returning.

The decision to return home was one of the biggest decisions taken by the hero. Coming back to Iran meant the acceptance to live in a tyrannical society. Nevertheless, Marjane decided to return to Iran to be close to her family. The adjustment to Iran was difficult, but at the end, Marjane overcame it. Nevertheless, Marjane continue to speak against the hypocrisy and tyranny of the religious fundamentalist. At the end, she realizes that while Iran is her home, she cannot live there. Marjane realizes that Iran is no longer as welcoming as she would want. Finally, at the age of 24 she unwillingly leaves Iran. She went to France hoping for a better future for her country Iran. Marjane past tells us that she is willing to speak and fight for what she believes. Therefore, as long as tyranny still exists in Iran, our hero will have a quest to finish.

Posted by: David Tilias (ENG122 CA03) at October 26, 2010 03:00 PM

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*NOTE* The deadline for the assignment shown above this message has now passed. Any comments listed below this message are *ONLY* for the reposting of comments that I specifically asked to be revised or are ones from non-student posters. Any 'student' posts below that missed the assignment deadline will not get credit for the assignment.

Posted by: Dr. B. Lee Hobbs at October 27, 2010 04:56 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
31 January, 2013

Question:What causes Marji to feel so ashamed? Why?

Answer:Marji is now old enough to understand the difference between social classes. She is an avid reader, so when she looks at the stories of children as young as three working to support their families, she realizes how better off she and her family are. The author of those stories "was Ali Ashraf Darvishian, a kind of local Charles Dickens (pg. 33)."

Marji also wishes she could do something about it, something more than just attend protests. However, Marji knows that just as she cannot attend the protests, she knows that she cannot do much to stop needless suffering.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at January 31, 2013 09:00 PM

Diego Pestana
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 – The Graphic Novel
1 February 2013

Question: According to Marji's dad, why will the Middle East never have peace? What do you think?

Answer: Marji's dad said that the Middle East will never had peace as long as it has oil. I think that peace in the Middle East will continue to be hard to come by until the cultural revolution that has been witnessed recently, like the Arab Spring, has totally affected the region and results in a truly liberal region.

Question: Who is Anoosh? How does Marji feel about him? Why?

Answer: Anoosh is Marji's uncle who was imprisoned. Marji loved him immediately because she thought that he was a genuine war hero unlike her parents.

Posted by: Diego Pestana at February 1, 2013 01:22 PM

Joseph Schwartz
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300
2/1/2013

Section 6: Question 1: What lesson does Marji learn from her mother?
In the Persepolis chapter six “The Party,” we see a young Marji caught between the footholds of a revolution and a society that accepts violence as a means of justice. Throughout Persepolis Marji is faced with numerous stories of violence and death, usually because of the tyranny of the Shah’s reign. As a young child Marji cannot fully understand the consequences of violent conflict, and thus sees it as a “game” with no finality. Marji’s mother confronts her about this, after witnessing her running around with nails in-between her fingers with her friends. After asking Marji what she is doing, she explains that her and her friends are going to enact revenge against a classmate’s father for his role as an assassin in the Shah’s secret police. Marji’s mother teaches her daughter later on that senseless violence is not an appropriate means of justice because it is not for them to decide penance for sins. Instead they must learn to forgive those around them who have caused harm to others.

Section 8: Question 1: Who is Anoosh? How does Marji feel about him and why?
Anoosh is Marji’s uncle who was a political prisoner and a long lost relative of the family. Marji is immediately attracted to Anoosh because her father is not a hero. Marji defines a hero, by becoming a political prisoner against the Shah’s reign. She is ashamed of her father because he did not endure like the rest of his friends. At school Marji frequently creates stories about her father, some of which are fantastical, to hide her shame. Anoosh delights Marji because his stories are full of action and adventure, she is proud to finally have a family member who actually paid a price for protest. Anoosh seemingly has all of the qualities her father lacks. Marji expresses her discontent for her father in this way. Marji doesn't fully understand the reality of prison life and the unspeakable horror of torture. This lack of understanding confuses and frightens her and that is why she uses Anoosh and his stories to disquiet the misperception.

Posted by: Joseph Schwartz at February 1, 2013 01:58 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
1 February, 2013

Question: What did bilingual represent to the new regime?

Answer: "They are symbols of capitalism (pg. 4)." Capitalism was seen as a product of the Western world; the regime was determined to keep their country and ways seperate from the Western world.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 1, 2013 05:38 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
1 February, 2013

Question: What two lessons does Marji learn from her mother?

Answer: Do not punish someone for what their father did ("His father did it. But it's not Ramin's fault (pg. 46).") and "we have to learn to forgive (pg. 46)."

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 1, 2013 06:25 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
1 February, 2013

Question: What does the illustration on pg. 77 reveal about Marji’s feelings about the vacation?

Answer: Marji feels that the vacation was magical; it took her and her parents away from their troubles for three weeks. Italy and Spain are foreign places to her, so these places would have been very exciting for her to visit.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 1, 2013 06:42 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
1 February, 2013

Question:Who does the government recruit to serve on the front lines of the war? How do they
persuade them? Can you think of another time when this practice has been used?

Answer: "The key to paradise was for poor people. Thousands of young kids, promised a better life, exploded on the minefields with their keys around their necks (pg. 102)." A key given to them in exchange for war duty, key that would get them to heaven with "plenty of food, women, and houses made of gold and diamonds (pg. 100)." Prior to the Protestant Reformation, if the Catholic Church needed some extra change, they would sell indulgences, guaranteeing the buyer a spot in heaven.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 1, 2013 07:37 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
1 February, 2013

Question:Why did Marji’s family continue to hold parties despite the danger?

Answer: They hold parties in order to deal with their difficult lifes. "Without them it wouldn't bepsychologically bearable...Without parties, we might as well just bury ourselves now (pg. 106)."

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 1, 2013 07:53 PM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
04 February 2013
Section 6-10 Questions
Question 18: Why do Marji’s parents subject themselves to a political upheaval and refuse to leave Iran? What is their opinion of those who left?
The answer to this question can be found on pages 62 and 64 of The Complete Persepolis. On page 64, Marjane's family discusses the possibility of leaving the country. However, Marjane's father rejects the idea with a snide remark about how they could be forced into a lower social position, saying "so that I can become a taxi driver and you a cleaning lady" (Satrapi 64). This reveals that the family is concerned about losing what they have. Also, on page 62, Marjane's father and Anoosh are having a political discussion, one where Anoosh states that "the religious leaders don't know how to govern. They will return to their mosques" (Satrapi). Another thing from page 64 is the father's assertion that "everyone who left will come back. They're just afraid of change. (Satrapi). This reveals that Marjane's family hopes that the current troubles with the religious regime will blow over soon and that their lives can return to normal under the new regime.
Question 22: What do the fundamentalist students do? How does this event affect Marji’s plans?
At the very start of the chapter titled "The Trip," the fundamentalist students captured the U.S. embassy and held the staff hostage. Because of this, Marji is unable to go to America to visit Kaveh.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 3, 2013 05:07 PM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
04 February 2013
Section 11-15 Questions
Question 8: What criticism does Marji’s mom make of capitalism? What confusing thing does she suggest as they leave the store?
While the mother doesn't make a specific comment about capitalism per se, she does deride the greed of the other shoppers, saying that "if stores were closed for a single day, [they'd] probably eat each other" (Satrapi 87). Here, the materialist impulses of the other shoppers to hoard food in a time of crisis is being cast as a negative, yet in the final panel of the page, Marjane's mother says "we'll go to the store across the street and try to get more [rice boxes]" (87). After having mocked the other shoppers for hoarding, the mother decides to check the store across the street so she can hoard more food for her family.
Question 22: Name one violation that Marji’s dad is guilty of at the traffic stop. How does his wife respond to the situation? What is a condition of their release?
The father is guilty of at least two violations, first, he had been drinking alcohol, second, he was wearing a tie, which was forbidden. The wife asks the soldier to be lenient, citing how young he is and the closeness of age between him and her daughter, Marjane in an attempt to reinforce the soldier's status as a child. Eventually, Marjane's dad is able to buy off the soldiers with money.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 3, 2013 07:28 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
4 February 2013

Question: Why was a picture of mom in the paper? How did she respond? Why?
Answer: A photographer took a picture of her when she was at a demonstration and it spread to all of the popular magazines and newspapers. She wasn’t happy when she heard that it had happened because she could be put in prison or killed.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 4, 2013 12:47 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
4 February 2013

Question: What did Marsi do for 6 months to help Mehri? Why?
Answer: She wrote love letters for her because Mehri couldn’t write and Marsi wanted her to be able to write back to her love.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 4, 2013 12:49 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
4 February 2013

Question: Besides their possessions, what else have refugee families lost?
Answer: Some of them have lost their family members and pride because of what the police have done to them.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 4, 2013 12:51 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
4 February 2013

Question: What injustices do the parents see in the education system?
Answer: The teachers start telling the children the opposite of what they were saying before. The universities start closing because the government thinks that the people don’t need them anymore.


Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 4, 2013 12:55 PM

Diego Pestana
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 – Graphic Novel
1 February 2013

Question: Who is Zarathustra, and what are his three rules for living?

Answer: Zarathustra was the first prophet of Iran before the Arab invasion. His three rules for living are: Behave well, speak well, and act well.

Question: Why did Marji's parents react to her statement about the Shah (hint: her family history)?

Answer: Marji's parents reacted in the way they did because she was regurgitating what she had been told in school, which was not a true version of events. The true version includes the fact that her great grandfather was the prince that was overthrown in favor of the Shah.

Posted by: Diego Pestana at February 4, 2013 01:56 PM

What injustices do the parents see in the educational system? Which restriction is particularly ironic?
In chapter thirteen “The Key,” we see Marji’s family reacting against the educational system in Iran. After the nation has been attacked by neighboring Iraq, the people are seemingly at a standstill. With most striving there attention to the war effort, many are finding that the benefits of staying home can be costly, even deadly. With frequent bombings and false news reports, the parents of Marji do not know what to believe. In earlier chapters there is a great disillusion between Marji’s parents and the newly enforced government of Iran. The new fundamentalist regime has instilled an older more crude value system that is at odds with modern day advances in beliefs and technology. The parents of Marji are angry at the injustices the school system creates. They are angry at the fact that the female children are forced to adorn customs that have sense gone extinct in modern culture. Examples of this, is that girls have to wear a hooded veil, they must learn “fundamentalist” teachings, and there education is focused on the war effort. Not education. A particular situation I found that was ironic, was the fact that boys are taught to die for their country and that they will receive a reward of paradise. Paradise includes wealth, food and women. The ironic part is most of the boys they are teaching are under fourteen, which means they haven’t even hit puberty yet.
What did the survival of the regime depend upon? What was the human cost of this survival?
In chapter fifteen “The Cigarette,” there is a significant amount of conflict and rebellion that seems to never find a resolution. The regime is still at war with Iraq and although they are losing the regime still hasn’t surrendered. It is revealed later that Iraq and Saudi Arabia have both proposed peace, and Iraq has denied it. It is becoming increasingly obvious now that the regime supports the war because it is making the ideology of the fundamentalists survive. The regime supported the mass murder of its civilians while simultaneously unearthing people who opposed there rule. The war allowed the regime to thrive because it focused the people onto something other than the totalitarian state they were living in. The war was a distraction to the real trouble that was brewing within the government. The perpetual state of war kept a stranglehold on the people and the ideals of democracy.

Posted by: Joseph Schwartz at February 4, 2013 02:19 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
5 February, 2013

Question: How does Marji’s mother attempt to protect her daughter? How does Marji discover
the truth? What does the last frame on page 142 reflect?

Answer: Marji's mother tries to change the subject to their taped windows and "When we walked past the Baba-Levy's house, which was completely destroyed, I could feel that she was discreetly pulling me away (pg. 142)." Marji discovers Neda's turquoise bracelet attached to what is left of her corpse. The last panel represents final death of Marji's innocence of the Iraqi-Iranian conflict. Past this panel, she no longer talks about how Iran should remember its proud history of repelling invaders.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 5, 2013 05:47 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
5 February, 2013

Question: What is her grandmother’s advice to her?

Answer: "Because there is nothing worse than bitterness and vengeance... Always keep your dignity and be true to yourself (pg. 150)." Marji's grandmother knows that Marji will have to go through trials and tribulations in Vienna by herself, so Marji needs to rememeber to be true to herself in order to survive.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 5, 2013 07:42 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
5 February 2013

Question: What problem do Marji’s parents face on their return from Istanbul? How does her mom show her ingenuity?
Answer: They have posters with them that aren’t allowed across the border. If they are caught with them then they can be arrested or executed. Marji’s mom figures out that she can sew the posters into her husband’s coat.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 5, 2013 10:28 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
5 February 2013

Question: How did Marji’s life change after Neda’s death? How did she behave in school?
Answer: After Neda died, Marji started rebelling in school and talking back to teachers. She went to another school and challenged the teacher on what they were saying. Her life completely changed because her parents decided to send her to Vienna.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 5, 2013 10:34 PM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
06 February 2013
Questions for sections 15-19
Question 15: People in need of hospital care face a dilemma: describe this problem.
Many of the managers of the medical infrastructure are untrained, and the caregivers available are short on vital medical resources. This forces critically ill patients, such as Uncle Taher, to attempt to leave the country to obtain medical assistance, but the process for obtaining a visa to leave the country is lengthy, and Taher dies before even an illegal forgery can be completed. Preventable deaths are occurring as a result of bureaucracy and incompetence.
Question 35: What happened to Niloufar? Why? How do you know? What is Marji’s reaction?
In an earlier chapter, it was revealed that Niloufar had been executed. However, in the chapter titled "The Dowry," it is revealed that Niloufar was forced to marry a guard, raped, and then executed because, as Marji's mom says, "it's against the law to kill a virgin" (145). Proof of this is supplied in that Niloufar's parents were paid 500 Tumans after Niloufar's death (note that is about five U.S. dollars). At first, Marji refuses to believe her parents about the rape, but after hearing about the dowry payment, she realizes that her parents were telling the truth. Marji is shocked by the revelation, and comes to the conclusion that the martyrdom espoused by her society was not a positive thing when innocent girls were being raped and executed.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 6, 2013 01:36 PM

Diego Pestana
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 – Graphic Novel
4 February 2013

Question: Does Marji's father intend to fight against the Iraqis? Why?

Answer: Marji's father does not intend to fight against the Iraqi's because he feels the real damage has come from his own government.

Question What is one of the ramifications of the nation's political conflict?

Answer: A shortage of supplies that families need in order to be properly fed and taken care of.

Posted by: Diego Pestana at February 6, 2013 01:38 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
7 February, 2013

Question: How did the revolution exert power and influence over so many people,
including many educated and middle class people like Satrapi’s parents? Why
did so many people leave after the revolution? Why do you think Marji’s parents
send her off to Austria while they stay in Tehran? Why don’t they leave/escape
as well?

Answer: Overtime, the political party in power would develops different restrictions that slowly made people conform. People left the country to avoid being forced into a conformist mold and a possible genocide of their sons as soldiers or aerial bombing. Marji's parents want her to have a chance at a free life that she might not have in Tehran. They stay because they can handle living under the Iranian government and they may not be able to leave.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 7, 2013 05:57 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
7 February, 2013

Question: What kinds of captivity and freedom does the author explore in Persepolis?
What stifles or prevents people from being completely free? How do they
circumvent and defy the rules imposed on them and attempt to live ordinary
lives despite revolution and war? Give some examples of their small acts of
rebellion.

Answer: The government required people to accept the Theocracy and employ the help of secret police ("guardians of the revolution" (pg. 132)). The people defy their government by having parties, drinking alcohol, and buying pop culture items off the black market.
"In spite of all the dangers, the parties went on... We had everything. Well, everything that was forbidden. Even alcohol, gallons of it (pg. 106)."
"...The growth of the black market. However, finding tapes was a little more complicated. On Gandhi Avenue you could find them sometimes pg. 132)."

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 7, 2013 08:01 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
7 February 2013

Question: Give some examples of how citizens enjoyed life despite oppressive regime. What made you laugh? How does Stratopi add comic relief? How are these relevant to stories as a whole?
Answer: The main thing that citizens did during that time was still throw parties with their friends and family. They also snuck things over the border that weren’t allowed. I thought it was funny how the kids reenacted what was going on with the war when they went to school. This is the comic relief in the story. It is almost showing that what the country is doing is childish. It is relevant to the story because it shows how what was happening to families and schools at the time were affecting kids.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 7, 2013 09:28 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
7 February 2013

Question: What is the role of women in the story? Compare and contrast various women, Marji, mom, grandma, school teacher, maid, neighbor, guardian of revolution.
Answer: Marji’s mother and school teacher have similar qualities. When the education system changes and the teacher has to start teaching exactly opposite of what she was preaching the day before, Marji thinks that she is being a hypocrite. The same can be said for when Marji is out with her mother and the see two people fighting over food. Her mother starts saying that if they only took what they needed then everyone would be happy. However, right after that statement she decides to go buy more rice after she had bought two bags. The Guardians of the Revolution are more strict and want to hold Marji back. This is similar to Marji’s mother when she is a teenager. Her grandmother seems to be the only one who is most similar to her because she wants her to just be happy to be Iranian.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 7, 2013 09:51 PM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
08 February 2013
Persepolis Questions 10 and 23
Question 10: What does Satrapi say regarding disparity between the classes before and after the Iranian Revolution? Discuss some examples that Marji witnesses and contemplates.
Early on in Satrapi's Persepolis, in the chapter titled "The Letter," Satrapi comments on the division of the social classes in Iran, mentioning that she felt "ashamed to sit in [her] father's Cadillac" (33). The shame Satrapi feels is largely attributable to just how deprived the lower classes were during the Shah's reign of Iran. After the revolution, however, the balance of power between classes shifts considerably. At one point, it is revealed that vital tasks related to health care are being left to an uneducated former window washer, creating fatal delays in the health care system. Under the new regime, the previously privileged classes, with their money and education, are now at the mercy of those who were once members of the lower class. Oddly enough, although most members of Marji's family are middle class or upper class, there are communists in her family, such as her uncle Anoosh.

Question 23: In the book Persepolis, Satrapi explores the different kinds of captivities and freedoms people face in their lives. What stifles or prevents people from being completely free? How do they circumvent and defy the rules imposed on them? How do people attempt to live ordinary lives despite revolution and war? Give examples of specific acts of rebellion from the book, from the world, or from your life.
Throughout Persepolis, there are many factors that prevent different characters from being completely free. One consistent restrictor of freedoms in the book is the government, whether said government is being run by the Shah or by the fundamentalist regime. Under the Shah, citizens were forbidden to engage in protests against the government, but they protested anyway, despite the harsh, violent government responses to the protests. Under the fundamentalist regime, the citizens were forbidden a great many things considered inappropriate in the fundamentalist interpretation of the Qur'an. Women in the new regime were forced to wear veils to cover their heads and protect men from the refracted light that drove them to intense sexual desire. The government organized groups to monitor citizens in public and accost those who would flaunt the dress code. Marji runs afoul of one such patrol on pages 132-4, and it is revealed that the group had the authority to hold Marji "for hours or for days. [She] could be whipped" and Marji says that "they didn't have to inform my parents" (134). Despite the severe restrictions of the new regime, individuals do resist some of the rules, some by skipping class, some by protesting (which ends violently, see page 76), and some people secretly flaunt the rules, buying the goods they want illegally on the street, such as when Marji buys the Kim Wilde tape on page 132. Under the fundamentalist regime, simple actions such as purchasing music have become illicit acts of subversion and rebellion.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 8, 2013 02:19 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
8 February, 2013

Vocabulary word-Juxtaposition: To place one thing right next to another, as in comparing two subjects in a paper or putting two rocks next to each other for a visual contrast.

Question: According to Basu, what two subjects does Satrapi carefully juxtapose in
her memoir?

Answer: Satrapi juxtaposes her story and personal experiences in life with different events from contemporary Iranian history. She does this to show us the history of her country and help us understand what is going on in the story.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 8, 2013 10:51 PM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
11 February 2013
Definition and Question #2
Apotheosis—according to the dictionary, apotheosis has two meanings:
1. An elevation of a person to the rank of God
2. An ideal example or epitome of a concept or object
In other words, a person can undergo apotheosis as an action, a verb, to become God, or it could mean that the person could exist in a state of absolute perfection of an ideal or trait, for example, being the apotheosis of skill in a particular sport.

Question 2: What, according to Basu, is “the overwhelming perception of Iranian women” and how does Satrapi “creatively counter” it? (1) Explain how this worked/works.
In the article "Crossing Cultures/ Crossing Genres: The Re-invention of the Graphic Memoir in Persepolis and Persepolis 2" by Lopamudra Basu, Basu makes the argument that Satrapi was countering the "overwhelming perception of Iranian women as oppressed subjects of Islamic religious orthodoxy" (1). One way in which Satrapi counters the popular image of Iranian women is to display some of the restrictions placed upon both genders, showing that women were not the only ones being oppressed by the new fundamentalist regime. Also, as Basu notes, "Even when the veil becomes an inescapable requirement of public dress, there are a myriad ways in which women defy the authority of the regime" (Basu 16-7). In other words, although the regime has placed restrictions on the women in the society, those women still find ways to subvert and resist the oppression of the fundamentalist authority.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 11, 2013 01:45 PM

Question 9: How, exactly, does Persepolis distinguish “itself from traditional [western]
autobiography”? (5) What is Basu’s understanding of the western
autobiographical style and how is it different from Satrapi’s?

In Marjane Satrapi’s “Persepolis” there is a different interpretation of the traditional western hero. The traditional western hero follows a template that is defined by genre. Bsau in his article "Crossing/Crossing Genre: The Re-invention of the Graphic Memoir in Persepolis and Persepolis 2” describes the traditional western hero as a male-dominated genre with an exclusive formula. The genre is structured in the third person and follows a growth through hardship. Satrapi is defying the bildungsroman by establishing female growth as the main subject matter. Marji is the voice within the story that captures this literary rebellion through the historical setting of Iran. Marji’s growth coincides with her countries; both show the rebellion against patriarchal dominance of not only fiction but history. Persepolis can be viewed as a modern retelling of the legendary Persian queen Scheherazade in the One Thousand and One Knights. Like the legendary queen, Satrapi is criticizing the patriarchal dominance of society by using the method of storytelling. Bsau differs from Satrapi’s interpretation because of the graphic novel form. Bsau argues that the visual subjectivity of the novel and use of the “third person” enables it be a partial (hybrid) interpretation of the traditional western hero.

Posted by: Joseph at February 11, 2013 02:41 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
12 February, 2013

Vocabulary word: Dialectic-A logical discusion or argument, presents two sides of a situation in stead of trying to come up with a solution.

Question: Explain how, according to Davis, “gaps in the narration of comics” are a “constitutive aspect of the renewed process of seeing.” How
do these gaps left by the writer work for the reader?

Answer: The reader understands that each story can stand alone or be connected with other stories in the author's recollection. For example, one story of Satrapi's childhood could be followed by a story that occured one year later. Also, she may intersplice a history lesson or a flashback in the story to help explain what is going to happen next.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 12, 2013 12:31 AM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
11 February 2013

Question: According to Davis’s abstract (page 264) what two theories does he employ in the analysis that follows it and what are the two major parts of his thesis. After reading the entire article, explain how Davis was or wasn’t successful in supporting these two claims.
Answer: Davis wants to analyze Stratopi’s use of comics and how they worked with her memoir. He also wants to argue that her memoir can be told through the genre and that a ‘book’ isn’t needed to tell the story.

Inflection: The change in the emphasis of a word to show a different mood or tense in the sentence.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 12, 2013 10:40 PM

Diego Pestana
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 – Graphic Novel
6 February 2013

Question: In what ways has Marji become an adult?

Real Answer: She is finding more mature ways to cope with her problems. For example, she smokes cigarettes as a way of taking out her frustration with her mothers. This is better compared to what she used to do when she was younger, where she would go after kids who had parents involved with the conflict.

Question: What happened to Iran's economy during the war? Is this unusual?

Answer: The value of the Iranian currency lost all of its value. There are often economic implications of war. Most notably, domestic spending by the government is diverted toward military ends in order to win the conflict.

Posted by: Diego Pestana at February 13, 2013 01:36 PM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
13 February 2013
Definition and Answer for Davis Article
Panoply— the dictionary has two basic definitions of this term: A full array or display of some type of item, and a protective covering or suit. For example, a panoply of games would likely involve a display of numerous categories and types of board games, video games, and party games.
Question 7: Page 265. What is challenged by “transcultural autobiographies,” according to Davis, “as they gesture towards new perceptions of cultural texts and choices”? After identifying the answer, explain why this seems to be either a valid or invalid assumption.
According to Davis, "transcultural autobiographies challenge the generic scripts prescribed by Euro-American autobiography" (265). But, to understand the assertion Davis is attempting to make, one should first decipher what Davis means when he uses the term transcultural. Does he mean that term as it is defined in the dictionary, meaning a work that extends "across cultures or involving more than one culture" (Encarta)? As it turns out, he is using a definition of transcultural given to him by another person, his professor, who he credits in his notes on page 277. Unfortunately, Davis never directly states what his professor said the meaning of transcultural was, so the reader must infer the meaning of the term based on how it is used in the essay.
Also, Davis only ever read the first book of Persepolis in the writing of his essay, and the narrator is in Iran for the entire duration of that book, so she never directly interacts with other cultures in the portions of the book that Davis researched. As a result, while certain themes of the book can be interpreted as transcultural, such as a rebellion against the established authority, the first book of Persepolis might address the presence of other cultures but it does not truly involve the other culture; it merely highlights the use of another culture's products as a means of escaping from or resisting the oppressive influence of the author's own Iranian government and the culture of fear it was creating.
Ultimately, Davis fails to sort out his own definition of transcultural autobiographies enough to allow this question to be answered in a satisfactory manner. In effect, this renders Davis' assumptions invalid because the reader would have too much difficulty in interpreting the meanings of Davis' terms as Davis applies them.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 13, 2013 01:49 PM

Diego Pestana
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 - Graphic Novel
8 February 2013

Question: One of the ways Satrapi seeks meaning in her life is through education. What links would you say are there between education and people's lives? You can start with yourself as an example before generalizing about others that you know.

Answer: I believe education plays an intrinsic role in how people choose to live their lives. The more knowledge that a person acquires either through formal education or life experience is often applied to the choices that they will make in the future. And these actions or decisions can have repercussions that affect others. For example, knowledge that I have gained as a part of my formal education has directly affect economic and political decisions I have made. For example, I have learned a lot over the years about economic and polictical theories, and I have voted in elections based on the knowledge I have have gained. I believe that this is the case for many people.

Question: Do you think this book attempts to change or shape public attitudes? On what do you base your opinion?

Answer: I do not think that this book attempts to change or shape public attitudes. I think that Satrapi is simply portraying her life experiences and she remembers it. Any political ramifications are simply accidental and perceived by the reader. But, I do not believe it was her intention to sway public opinion.

Posted by: Diego Pestana at February 13, 2013 01:50 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
14 February, 2013

Question: On pg. 354, Malek says that Persepolis is a "blend the genres of memoir and graphic novel." Then she gives more words that are used in place of the term graphic novel. Why does she find it important to include these terms?

Answer: Malek may have wanted to make her point clear about Persepolis being a graphic novel. Any one of these terms may also be more familiar to some of her intended audience. Malek might have been trying to subtly point out that the graphic novel is an important genre that is not just a passing fad like beehive hairstyles.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 14, 2013 02:32 AM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
14 February 2013
Discussion Question for the Malek Article
Question: How, as Malek states, may Naficy say that a foreign cultural product considered an "exilic 'threat'" (356) be defused by popular culture?
According to Malek, Naficy states that: "By appropriating 'exilic world views and artifacts,' the dominant culture neutralizes the specificity of their content and thus mutes as mere difference or style any exilic opposition…[they] then become part of the larger 'ethnic diversity' trend" (356). In other words, a larger, mainstream culture such as what exists in the U.S. would appropriate the elements of a smaller culture-in-exile, such as the Iranian writers, and subsume them as a part of the mainstream. By forcing an identification as mainstream, the exilic content of the work loses strength as a countermeasure to the mainstream even as it finds acceptance by the larger society. In essence, the rebellious counter-cultural element of the exilic work is defused by absorption into mainstream culture.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 14, 2013 03:32 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
14 February 2013

Question: How do exiles play a role in keeping cultures intact?
Answer: When they go to different cultures, they will adapt their new culture and blend in to them and the old culture will be rid of them because they didn’t want to conform to their ways. This is where hybridity comes in. The exiled ones keep some of their old culture and also adapt to their new culture.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 14, 2013 10:27 PM

Kevin Michael Schuster
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 – ST: Graphic Novel
15.2.2013
Malek – Pages 269-70
Question: How does Malek feel that Persepolis and Persepolis 2 are able to cross cultural boundaries and instill a sense of personal connection within all of the readers of the text?

Answer: It is Malek’s opinion that the story of exile – and Satrapi’s attempts to fit in while in Austria as well as her various identity crises – and return – and the struggles that Satrapi endures trying to reintegrate herself to her native culture – and the final exile resonate throughout readers from any culture.

Posted by: Kevin Michael Schuster at February 14, 2013 10:56 PM

Travis N. Rathbone
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 300
15 February 2013

Discussion Question for the Malek Article

Q: Near the end of the essay “Memoir as Iranian Exile Cultural Production: A Case Study of Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis Series,” Amy Malek states the following: “One of the major successes of Persepolis . . . is that it ‘teaches by stealth’” (378). Interpret the meaning of this claim.

A: Persepolis is engrossing in such a way that even if a reader is unfamiliar with the historical or social aspects of Iranian culture prior to reading the graphic narrative, he will come away from the experience with a “wealth of information” at the completion of the tale (378).

Posted by: Travis N. Rathbone at February 15, 2013 12:14 PM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
Eng 300
15 February 2013

Malek Article Pg. 355-56

Question:
According to Naficy, “the exilic state is based on the condition of inbetweenness” (Malek 355). What does this state of inbetweenness entail? How does the exile gain a unique perspective?

Answer:
The exile is in a unique position between two worlds, which allows him/her to question previous authorities, identities and cultural practices. Exiles can create a new expression and culture. Deterritorialization helps them to create this new understanding of the world, one that is more distinctly individual and not as influenced by their homeland. They are actually granted the opportunity to replace their codes and values and increase cultural diversity.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 15, 2013 01:17 PM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
17 February 2013
Question and Answer for Segall Article
Question: According to Kimberly Segall, how does Persepolis I become "an integrated, repeated act of symbolizing the lost innocence of children" (40).
In her article "Melancholy Ties: Intergenerational Loss and Exile in Persepolis," Kimberly Segall notes a repetition of tragic events, saying that "the story of Uncle Anoosh and Marjane in the jail cell parallels another father and (surrogate) daughter story… Later, her mother realizes that her father has been destroyed by the state" (40). Both Marjane and her mother have suffered a loss of innocence as a result of loved ones being persecuted by the authorities. This repetition of tragedy is what makes Persepolis I "an integrated, repeated act of symbolizing the lost innocence of children" (40).

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 17, 2013 11:21 AM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
16 February, 2013

Question: On page 39, Segall say that “portraits of grief refuse the idea of the rational, controlled narrator.” After reading the book from beginning to end, does the adult Satrapi (telling the whole story) seem like a rational, controlled narrator?

Answer: Satrapi is a rational, controlled narrator because she is telling the story with years of retrospective that allow her to make a clear point in a way that she could not have done as a child or in the heat of the moment. Without the portraits of grief, the story would be less personal and harder to relate to.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 17, 2013 06:29 PM

Diego Pestana
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 - Graphic Novel
13 February 2013

Question: In addition to the chief narrator of Persepolis (Satrapi herself), who are the other key storytellers? There are several. Explain what these different storytellers represent according to Basu and Walter Benjamin.

Answer: According to Basu, two of the other very important storytellers in Persepolis are Marji's grandmother and Uncle Anoosh. Both of these characters educate Marji on the history of Iranian politics. For Basu and Walter Benjamin, these different storytellers create a type of chain in which traditional knowledge is passed down from one generation to another. And, according to Benjamin, this chain comes to a conclusion where all the stories form in the end.

Question: Define imbue.

Answer: To inspire with opinion.

Posted by: Diego Pestana at February 17, 2013 11:09 PM

Kevin Michael Schuster
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 – ST: Graphic Novel
18.2.2013
Segall - p. 9
Question: Segall suggests that Marjane lost her sense of identity during her time in Austria. How does Segall suggest this happened and when does Segall believe that Marjane rediscovered this sense of identity?

Answer: Segall suggests that Marjane lost her sense of identity during exile through her association with various groups of people that misidentified themselves. She feels that misidentification caused Marjane to lose track of who she was. That sense of identity was regained after she returned to Iran and her grandmother chastised her for falsely accusing a man of harassment simply to avoid getting into trouble for her own attire.

Posted by: Kevin Michael Schuster at February 18, 2013 10:36 AM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
19 February, 2013

Question: Figures 1 and 2 on pages 229 and 230 each display something from both volumes of Persepolis. What is the object and how does this plant grow in importance from Persepolis to Persepolis II.

Answer: The tulip, it grows from an abundant flower that blooms in Iran during the spring to a plant sown and reaped from a martyr's blood.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 19, 2013 12:05 AM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
19 February 2013
Question and Answer for "Estranging the Familiar" Article
Question: According to the authors of "Estranging the Familiar: 'East' and 'West' in Satrapi's Persepolis," how does the West provide Marjane "a way out of her predicament" (238) when she is confronted by the guardians of the revolution?
In relation to the specific instance referenced by the authors, it is Marjane's "familiarity with western cultural figures [that] provides her with a way out of her predicament" (238). Marji makes the claim that her button is an image of Malcolm X, not of Michael Jackson, and as the narrator, she notes that Jackson was still black at that time. Here, Satrapi has demonstrated her awareness of not just pop music icons, but also cultural leaders of the West. The authors of the "Estranging the Familiar" article have picked up on Satrapi's worldly knowledge demonstrated within that scene and identified it as a key element in her attempt to evade punishment for her transgression of wearing a pop culture pin.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 19, 2013 05:09 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
21 February, 2013

Question: On page 98, what aspect of Persian culture is referenced in Satrapi's technique? What scenes are they usually depicting?

Answer: Satrapi references ancient Persian miniatures, murals, and friezes. She usually saves this style to depict the public protests and executed corpses.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 21, 2013 08:32 PM

Kevin Michael Schuster
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 ST: Graphic Novel
22.2.2013
Chute: p. 106-107

Question: Chute discusses the critical acclaim that the film version of "Persepolis" received as well as the recognition it earned at the Cannes Film Festival. What kind of reaction did the film receive from the Iranian government?

Answer: The film received a negative reaction from the Iranian government because they felt that it was "anti-Iranian" and attempting to "sabotage Iranian culture."

Posted by: Kevin Michael Schuster at February 22, 2013 11:36 AM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
22 February 2013
Question and Answer for Chute Article
Question: According to Hillary Chute, how does Satrapi "directly [engage] her readers" (96) and what effect does that have?
As Chute says in her article:
Here Satrapi uses spacing within the pictorial frame as the disruption of her own characterological presence. We do in fact, clearly, "see" her-just not all of her-but her self-presentation as fragmented, cut, disembodied, and divided between frames indicates the psychological condition suggested by the chapter's title, "The Veil." An icon of a single eye, directly engaging the reader, dangles over the book's very first gutter, reminding readers at the outset that we are aligned with Satrapi's penetrating vision and enabling retracing of that vision. (96).
In short, the caricature on the first panel directly confronts the reader with her gaze, which draws in the reader and makes the reader not only a witness to the narrative, but a participant.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 22, 2013 12:10 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
21 February 22, 2013
Question: At the end of The Cigarette, Marji thinks she is an adult. Why do you think at the last page it shows her passing prisoners about to be executed?

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 22, 2013 01:11 PM

Joseph Schwartz
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300
2/22/13

Pages 94-95
Questions for the article The Texture of Retracing in Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis
What does Hillary Chute mean when she states “And while its content is keenly feminist, I will argue that we may understand the text as modeling a feminist methodology in its form?” And how does this coincide with her thesis?
What is the psychological condition suggested by the chapter’s title “The Veil?” And how does that relate the actual “framing” of the narrative?

Posted by: Joseph Schwartz at February 22, 2013 02:20 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
8 February, 2013

Vocabulary word-Juxtaposition: To place one thing right next to another, as in comparing two subjects in a paper or putting two rocks next to each other for a visual contrast.

Question: According to Lopamudra Basu in “Crossing Cultures/Crossing Genres-The Re-invention of the Graphic Memoir in Persepolis,” what two subjects does Satrapi carefully juxtapose in her memoir?

Answer: Satrapi juxtaposes her story and personal experiences in life with different events from contemporary Iranian history. She does this to show us the history of her country and help us understand what is going on in the story.

Basu, Lopamudra - "Crossing Cultures/Crossing Genres- The Re-invention of the Graphic Memoir in _Persepolis

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 22, 2013 09:01 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
12 February, 2013

Vocabulary word: Dialectic-A logical discussion or argument, presents two sides of a situation instead of trying to come up with a solution.

Question: In “A Graphic Self: Comics as Autobiography in Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis,” Rocio G. Davis says that “gaps in the narration of comics” are a “constitutive aspect of the renewed process of seeing.” How do these gaps left by the writer work for the reader?

Answer: The reader understands that each story can stand alone or be connected with other stories in the author's recollection. For example, one story of Satrapi's childhood could be followed by a story that occurred one year later. Also, she may intersplice a history lesson or a flashback in the story to help explain what is going to happen next.

Davis, Rocio G. - "A Graphic Self: Comics as Autobiography in Marjane Satrapi’s _Persepolis_"

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 22, 2013 09:11 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
14 February, 2013

Question: On pg. 354 of “Memoir as Iranian Exile Cultural Production: A Case Study of Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis,” Amy Malek says that Persepolis is a "blend the genres of memoir and graphic novel." Then she gives more words that are used in place of the term graphic novel. Why does she find it important to include these terms?

Answer: Malek may have wanted to make her point clear about Persepolis being a graphic novel. Any one of these terms may also be more familiar to some of her intended audience. Malek might have been trying to subtly point out that the graphic novel is an important genre that is not just a passing fad like beehive hairstyles.

Malek, Amy - "Memoir as Iranian Exile Cultural Production: A Case Study of Marjane Satrapi’s _Persepolis"

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 22, 2013 09:20 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
16 February, 2013

Question: On page 39 of “Melancholy Ties-Intergenerational Loss and Exile in Persepolis,” Kimberly Wedeven Segall say that “portraits of grief refuse the idea of the rational, controlled narrator.” After reading the book from beginning to end, does the adult Satrapi (telling the whole story) seem like a rational, controlled narrator?

Answer: Satrapi is a rational, controlled narrator because she is telling the story with years of retrospective that allow her to make a clear point in a way that she could not have done as a child or in the heat of the moment. Without the portraits of grief, the story would be less personal and harder to relate to.

Segall, Kimberly Wedeven - "Melancholy Ties- Intergenerational Loss and Exile in _Persepolis_"

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 22, 2013 09:40 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
19 February, 2013

Question: In “Estranging the Familiar-‘East’ and ‘West’ in Satrapi’s Persepolis” by Nima Naghibi and Andrew O’ Malley, figures 1 and 2 on pages 229 and 230 each display something from both volumes of Persepolis. What is the object and how does this plant grow in importance from Persepolis to Persepolis II.

Answer: The tulip, it grows from an abundant flower that blooms in Iran during the spring to a plant sown and reaped from a martyr's blood.

Naghibi, Nima and Andrew O'Malley - "Estranging the Familiar- 'East' and 'West' in Satrapi’s _Persepolis

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 22, 2013 09:54 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
21 February, 2013

Question: On page 98 of “The Texture of Retracing in Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis” by Hillary Chute, what aspect of Persian culture is referenced in Satrapi's technique? What scenes are they usually depicting?

Answer: Satrapi references ancient Persian miniatures, murals, and friezes. She usually saves this style to depict the public protests and executed corpses.

Chute, Hillary - "The Texture of Retracing in Marjane Satrapi's _Persepolis_"

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 22, 2013 10:03 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
22 February, 2013

Question: In "Autographics: The Seeing 'I' of the of the Comics" by Gillian Whitlock, on page 971 he informs the reader about Satrapi's occupation. What is the quote and how does it hint at the creation of Persepolis?

Answer: She "works with the French collective L'Association in Paris, that specializes in the French tradition of the bandes dessinées comics for adults (971)." Since she works in a company that makes adult comics, having her story told as a graphic novel would have been easy for her to do and she could shown the reader exactly what she is talking about without censor.

Whitlock, Gillian - "Autographics: The Seeing 'I' of the Comics"

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at February 22, 2013 11:35 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
41 February 22, 2013
Question: In ‘Autographics: The Seeing “I” of the Comics, Whitlock says on page 972, “The intensity of this loss of the self and its place in the world engenders a resurrection through memoir as a Western metropolitan intellectual and a diasporic subject with a troubled and ambivalent relation to a lost homeland and to contemporary Iranian culture and Society.” Explain how Stratopi does this.
Answer: Stratopi keeps herself separate from Iran not only when she is sent abroad but when she lives there as well. She doesn’t want to wear the veil and she always buys music that would get her arrested. When she does go to a different country she makes friends who she doesn’t always feel connected to and she is homeless at one point.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon at February 24, 2013 11:20 PM

Kevin Michael Schuster
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 – ST: Graphic Novel
15.2.2013
Malek – Pages 269-70
Question: How does Malek feel that Persepolis and Persepolis 2 are able to cross cultural boundaries and instill a sense of personal connection within all of the readers of the text (370)?

Answer: It is Malek’s opinion that the story of exile – and Satrapi’s attempts to fit in while in Austria as well as her various identity crises – and return – and the struggles that Satrapi endures trying to reintegrate herself to her native culture – and the final exile resonate throughout readers from any culture.

Posted by: Kevin Michael Schuster at February 25, 2013 10:28 AM

Kevin Michael Schuster
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 – ST: Graphic Novel
18.2.2013
Segall - p. 9
Question: On page 46 Segall suggests that Marjane lost her sense of identity during her time in Austria. How does Segall suggest this happened and when does Segall believe that Marjane rediscovered this sense of identity?

Answer: Segall suggests that Marjane lost her sense of identity during exile through her association with various groups of people that misidentified themselves. She feels that misidentification caused Marjane to lose track of who she was. That sense of identity was regained after she returned to Iran and her grandmother chastised her for falsely accusing a man of harassment simply to avoid getting into trouble for her own attire.

Posted by: Kevin Michael Schuster at February 25, 2013 10:30 AM

Kevin Michael Schuster
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 ST: Graphic Novel
22.2.2013
Chute: p. 106-107

Question: Chute discusses, on page 106, the critical acclaim that the film version of "Persepolis" received as well as the recognition it earned at the Cannes Film Festival. What kind of reaction did the film receive from the Iranian government?

Answer: The film received a negative reaction from the Iranian government because they felt that it was "anti-Iranian" and attempting to "sabotage Iranian culture."

Posted by: Kevin Michael Schuster at February 25, 2013 10:30 AM

Kevin Michael Schuster
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 ST: Graphic Novel
25.2.2013
Whitlock: p. 975

Question: On page 975, what does Whitlock believe Satrapi is trying to do with the art style of Persepolis?

Answer: Whitlock believes that Satrapi is attempting to "subvert the tendency of the 'other ones' to dehumanize veiled women." The fact that she is doing so in a black-and-white graphic novel is interesting, but the subtle touches of personality in each individual, even when veiled, shine through in the little things they do to rebel against the system that forces them to wear the veil.

Posted by: Kevin Michael Schuster at February 25, 2013 10:37 AM

Sarah Coffin-Karlin
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300
25 February 2013

Section 1, Question 2: What did the veil symbolize?

The veil--a significant part of Islamic culture--symbolized either a return to religious roots or a repression of freedom, depending on whether you supported or protested it. Marji's family, which is very modern, was highly against it; her mother even ended up in international newspapers.

Section 4, Question 1: According to Marji, how was a king chosen? What was her rationale?

Marji believed that a king was chosen by God; at age 10, she believed it because it was written in her schoolbook and because her teacher said so (19). When she attempts to explain this to her family, her father explains to her why her rationale is wrong, regaling her in the family history of opposition to the Shah's rule.

Posted by: Sarah Coffin-Karlin at February 25, 2013 11:03 AM

Diego Pestana
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 – Graphic Novel
25 February 2013

Question: In “Autographics: The Seeing 'I' of Comics,” Gillian Whitlock refers to how Marianne Hirsch argues for the importance of visual images. What specifically does Hirsch argue and what does she mean? Give the example that Whitlock uses herself and explain how it relates to Hirsch's argument.

Answer: Hirsch argues that it is necessary to consider visuality and visual-verbal conjunctions in literature in today's environment. What this means is that it is necessary to understand the relationship between visual images and the transmission of memories of trauma and violence, especially in a time rampant with wars, like the Iraq War. Whitlock uses the images of the Abu Ghraib prison as support for this idea. The Abu Graib incident is an example of how a government tried to control images that it knew to be damning because they did not want citizens to have an understanding of the atrocities that were taking place as a result of the war. In other words, the government knew about the importance of relating images with ideas, as Hirsch affirms, and therefore tried to avoid having the pictures released.

Posted by: Diego Pestana at February 25, 2013 11:20 AM

Pgs. 353-54
What is the thesis of Amy Malek’s article “Memoir as Iranian Exile Cultural Production: A Case Study of Marjane Satrapi’s Peresoplis Series?” And how is it connected to her view of Iranian diaspora?
Amy Malek’s thesis revolves around the idea that the Iranian community has a lost a sense of identity. This is because of the lack of research conducted by both the Iran government and western outsiders, on what quantifies the true “diaspora” of Iran. Amy Malek’s uses a “qualitative approach” to scrutinize a country that has been placed in a cultural exile. Using Marjane Satarpi’s Persepolis as fictional source of this internal struggle, we as a scholar and reader, have a fictional memoir of a female Iranian who explores the themes of this struggle through the loss of cultural identity.

Posted by: Joseph Schwartz at February 25, 2013 11:21 AM

Pg. 40-41
In Kimberly Segall’s “Melancholy Ties: Intergenerational Loss and Exile in Persepolis,” there is an exploration of religion and its relationship to Persepolis. What is Marji’s relationship with god in the novel? And how are they connected to familial loss?
In the article, Segall explores the nature of religion and its impact on Marji and her cultural roots. As a young girl Marji (at-least in the beginning) has a very close relationship with God. She is consistently depicted in God’s arms safe from the retribution of her world. Her dreams are to become a prophet and fight for the revolution. Although God does listen, he eventually leaves causing a great deal of doubt in Marji’s life. This creates a “detachment of her closeness to God,” which also connects with the destruction of the revolutionary movement in Iran. As destruction and violence occur within her culture, the sense of alienation and loss is disseminated among the families. This sense of loss, and detachment, coincide with loss of religious beliefs in the Iranian family unit.

Posted by: Joseph Schwartz at February 25, 2013 11:21 AM

Pg. 225-226
In the article “Estranging the Familiar: “East” and “West” in Satrapi’s Persepolis,” what is the distinction between the literary and popular? According to the article, can the “comic-book” form be viewed as literary?
In the article there is an exploration of the literary canon, as it pertains to “high” and “low” brow society. With this discussion, there are other areas that concern the nature of Persepolis and its impact on the canon itself. Persepolis can be defined by several different genres: popular fiction, children’s autobiography, young-adult literature, and middle-eastern history. These different categories give Persepolis a unique view on what can be proposed as literary and popular. Because most literary texts are separated from popular fiction, Persepolis causes problems within the make-up of what our definition of literary. In the article the distinction between literary and popular is defined by western culture. In the western culture, the comic book has traditionally been labeled as a “popular” yet “unliterary” form. This has been contested (mainly by the Pulitzer Prize winning work-Maus by Art Spiegelman) and slowly this negative notion surrounding the comic book genre is being revaluated.

Posted by: Joseph Schwartz at February 25, 2013 11:22 AM

Pg. 94-95
Questions for the article The Texture of Retracing in Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis
What does Hillary Chute mean when she states “And while its content is keenly feminist, I will argue that we may understand the text as modeling a feminist methodology in its form?” And how does this coincide with her thesis?
In her thesis, Hilary Chute, demonstrates a clear knowledge of what the feminist ideology entails. She is aware that as a form, the comic-book is dominated by the male gender. She is also aware that feminists largely ignore the “graphic-novel” as an essential form in feminist literature. Although that field of thought is slowly growing, there is still quite a divide between male and female authors in the graphic novel genre. Persepolis is defined by Chute, as a novel that is clearly feminist, and can be understood more effectively by its modeling of feminist methodology in its form. Persepolis’ form as a comic-book depicts the author in a dimension that has never been quite understood. Persepolis is not just an autobiography it is a self-portrait that can be visually seen, something that feminist literature has never before tried to use as content for their methodology.

Posted by: Joseph Schwartz at February 25, 2013 11:22 AM

Pg. 966-67
What is the definition of the term “auto-graphics” in Gillian Whitlock’s “The Seeing “I” of Comics?” And how is its definition important in the use comic book imagery?
The thesis in Whitlock’s article asks many questions that still to this day occur when discussing comic books: How can we consume images as passive observers? And how can we govern the terms of visual representation? In the article, the answers to the questions rely on the interpretation of visual art and how it pertains to the autobiographical nature of its authorship. The definition of auto-graphics is as following: “By coining the term “auto-graphics” for graphic memoir I mean to draw attention to specific conjunctions of visual and verbal text in this genre of autobiography, and also to the subject positions of the narrators negotiate in and through comics----features of discursive frameworks” (Whitlock 966). This definition can be simplified, auto-graphics is a term used to define the authors intentions as a narrator while creating visual recreations of his history. The complexity of the terms derives from this “re-creation” of past history. The importance of such a concept is the changing dissertations of the perceived “self.” This shows us the shift between life stages, while also showing us the shift between the limits of how an autobiography can be written. Auto-graphics and is important in defining visual imagery, because it pushes the limits of visual interpretation. Because auto-graphics are specific in its recreation of events and narratives, the interpretation by the reader can be something different or wholly connective. The relationship between the reader and the author has now changed. Instead of “imagining” an author’s purpose or “recreating” an author’s purpose, as a reader, auto-graphics offers us a visual image of the author’s purpose. Even though it may be different from the author’s original conception, a reader gathers a greater connection to the author through this visual stimulation. Cultural and societal connections are felt because the reader now is now not only free to explore the author but his inquiry into the human condition. "…..seemed to say what couldn't otherwise be said, perhaps what wasn't permitted to be said or imagined, defying the ordinary processes of thought, which are policed, shaped and re-shaped by all sorts of pedagogical as well as ideological pressures. . . . I felt that comics freed me to think and imagine and see differently"(Whitlock 967).

Posted by: Joseph Schwartz at February 25, 2013 11:23 AM

Diego Pestana
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 - Graphic Novel
25 February 2013

Question: In “Estranging the Familiar: 'East' and 'West' in Satrapi's Persepolis,” Nima Naghibi and Andrew O'Malley state that Satrapi's work has radical potential. What gives her work radical potential according to the authors?

Answer: What gives Persepolis radical potential is its inability to be seamlessly interpreted by Western readers. Naghibi and O'Malley write that Satrapi's text has ideas recognizable to Western readers, but those ideas then lead into a different meaning that are not embedded in the framework of the Western reader.

Question: What imagery do Naghibi and O'Malley use as an example to support their idea that Persepolis is filled with content both familiar and unfamiliar to the Western reader?

Answer: Naghibi and O'Malley refer to the image on the front cover of Persepolis that shows Marji in a context of Iranian culture through its use of the veil. This is contrasted with the image of her self-portrait on the back flap of the dust jacket that shows her as hip and very Western. This is an example of how Satrapi's work shows something the Western reader is unfamiliar with (Iranian culture) and something they are familiar with (Western attire).

Posted by: Diego Pestana at February 25, 2013 11:38 AM

Diego Pestana
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 - Graphic Novel
25 February 2013

Question: In “Memoir as Iranian Exile Cultural Production: A Case Study of Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis Series,” Amy Malek cites Carolyn G. Heilbrun and the reason why she believes memoirs have been gaining popularity recently. What is it that Heilbrun states?

Answer: Heilbrun says that memoirs have been gaining popularity because it has a mandate to reveal circumstances in the author's life that support the claims the author makes about the world. She also states that oftentimes these writers are women.

Question: What does Malek attribute the popularity of Iranian memoirs to (Hint: page 362)?

Answer: Malek states that the post 9/11 atmosphere has ignited a feeling of curiosity toward Iran that was never satisfied when sparked in the 1980s. Malek states that Americans and others around the world wish to gain an insight into the country that has been labeled “evil” and Iranian exiles have sought to examine and illustrate their experiences of the country.

Posted by: Diego Pestana at February 25, 2013 11:48 AM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
ENG 300
30 January 2013
Question #4 & 2

4. How do the women respond to the veil?

Some women do not mind wearing the veil, but others are very offended by it. The school age girls make fun of the veil and play games with it. They do not understand the meaning behind it or why they should wear it.

2. How does Marji’s relationship with God begin to change?

Marji no longer sees herself as a possible prophet of God, and does not feel as much comfort and solace in her reflections of him.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 25, 2013 11:51 AM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
ENG 300
4 February 2013
Question #1 & 8

1. How does the Shah attempt to appease the people? Why did he fail?

He attempts to please the people by appointing a prime minister. This does not appease them because it is “too little too late.” Also, he is still the one who is choosing the prime minister.

8. According to Marji, what makes a hero?
Marji believes a hero is someone who is willing to fight and die for a cause. She admires those who are tortured by the government for what they believe in, like her grandfather. Such extreme courage is heroic in her eyes.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 25, 2013 11:51 AM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
ENG 300
6 February 2013
Question #6 & 14

6. Where had Siamak and Mohsen been for the last several years? Why?

They were in prison for participating in communist revolutionary acts. They endured horrific torture in the prisons by Iranians trained by CIA members.

14. What gift does Anoosh give to Marji? What might it symbolize?

Anoosh gives Marji a swan he made in prison. According to Celtic myth, swans symbolize the theme of unity. Anoosh feels unity toward Marji and entrusts her with carrying on their family memories.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 25, 2013 11:52 AM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
ENG 300
8 February 2013
Question #16 & 20

Question #16 Satrapi realizes that freedom of thought and action accompanies adolescence and adulthood. Yet, as we know, with freedom comes real costs and responsibility. Contemplate the balance between freedom and responsibility in your world.

Everyone has a responsibility to use their freedom in a way to benefit their society. They should make sensible choices that are not going to cause harm to others. They also should be careful not to become an “innocent bystander.” Innocent bystander are not truly innocent; they bear the guilt of not intervening for what is right.

Question #20 What is the human cost of war and political repression?

Death is the highest and most obvious cost. Other costs include broken families, traumatized individuals, loss of faith in religion, government, and humanity in general, intolerance, and deprivation of childhood innocence. People are robbed of their freedoms and their identities. In Persepolis, Marji’s mother is attacked for wearing her veil and has to life about praying because of her intolerant government.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 25, 2013 11:52 AM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
ENG 300
11 February 2013
Question #15

In Basu Lopamudra Basu’s article "Crossing Cultures/Crossing GenresThe Re-invention of the Graphic Memoir in Persepolis and Persepolis 2,” what does Basu mean when she says, “Marji and Reza begin their relationship with romanticized perceptions about each other”? Explain.

Romantic attachment can cause one to have misconceptions about the person that they attach themselves to. Often they will amplify the desirable qualities and ignore the distasteful ones. This is why Marji draws 2 panels representing herself. One is the way she really is, and the other is how Reza sees her. The contrast between these images presents her either as a feminine, submissive wife or as a masculine, rebellious woman. As Basu states, “This visual contrast reinforces the notion of the limitations of the romantic perspective and how any perception is ultimately partial” (16). Romantic attachment changes one’s perception. It’s not until the initial attraction wears off that they begin to see each other for who they truly are.

Facile means to have superficial knowledge, especially by ignoring the complexity of an issue. This can be applied to an argument or to a person. Facile can be used to describe something that is easily obtained or simplistic. It can also be applied to describe one who is working with ease and fluency.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 25, 2013 11:53 AM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
ENG 300
13 February 2013
Question #10

“Comics,” claims “Will Eisner, in his germinal work, Graphic Storytelling and Visual,” are “at the center” of what twentieth-century (and onwards) phenomenon? What reason/s does he give for the paradigm shift in “the definition of ‘literacy’ ”? Explain.

He explains that graphic storytelling and visual are at the center of the phenomenon of the growth of technology. Visual literacy has increased extensively in popularity because of the images that are constantly shown with text which offer a more effective communicant. The combination of words and pictures allows for more “flexibility in the manipulation of meaning” (266). Significant ideological meaning is able to be expressed through visual literacy in the comic art form.

Ostensible means that something appears to be true but is not necessarily true. It can also mean that something is intended for display.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 25, 2013 11:54 AM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
Eng 300
15 February 2013
Malek Article Pg. 355-56

Question: Amy Malek’s article "Memoir as Iranian Exile Cultural Production: A Case Study of Marjane Satrapi’s _Persepolis” describes “the exilic state [as] based on the condition of inbetweenness” (355). What does this state of inbetweenness entail? How does the exile gain a unique perspective?

Answer: The exile is in a unique position between two worlds, which allows him/her to question previous authorities, identities and cultural practices. Exiles can create a new expression and culture. Deterritorialization helps them to create this new understanding of the world, one that is more distinctly individual and not as influenced by their homeland. They are actually granted the opportunity to replace their codes and values and increase cultural diversity.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 25, 2013 11:54 AM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
ENG 300
20 February 2013
Naghibi 225-226

Question: Naghibi and O’Malley in “Estranging the Familiar: “East” and “West” in Satrapi’s Persepolis” claim that the universality of the protagonist Marji’s experiences and the similarities that make “her” and “us” human…can be understood as liberal and humanist (225). Describe why this is true.

Answer: Satrapi Western-normalizes her text, so that Westerners are able to relate to her and her experiences, especially since she is part Western herself in a way. The radical difference between the East and the West is infused in the character of Marji.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 25, 2013 11:59 AM

Nicole Natoli
Professor Hobbs
ENG 300
25 February 2013
Midterm Pg. 970

Question: In Gillian Whitlock’s "Autographics: The Seeing 'I' of the Comics," Whitlock poses the question, “Can [comic book authors] use the distinctive technologies of comics to engage with cultural difference and the legacies of trauma?” (970). I pose a similar question. Does Satrapi express the trauma and censorship of Iranian culture successfully through the medium of the graphic novel?

Answer: Whitlock points out that the graphic novel frees readers to think and imagine the cross-cultural relations between Iran and the West differently. For example, the figures of the cartoons express censorship more acutely through the veiled bodies of women than a text could. The visual depiction of women’s bodies that are covered and set in distinctive black and white shows how dehumanizing censorship can be. However, Satrapi depicts women in her cartoons who are against the stereotypical silent Muslim women. Satrapi’s female characters still retain their individual identities, even with the restrictive veils. The veils become part of their identities without defining them. This shows how she is able to help the West to understand the resistance of some Iranian women, so she is using the distinctive technologies of comics to engage with cultural differences successfully (976).

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at February 25, 2013 11:59 AM

Douglas Phillips
Burgsbee Hobbs
Graphic Novel
25 February 2013
Question and Answer for the Whitlock Article
Question: In Gillian Whitlock's article, "Autographics: the Seeing 'I' of Comics," why, according to the author, does the French government approve the inclusion of Persepolis into the literary curriculum and what effect does it have?
According to Whitlock:
Persepolis 1 was published in France in 2000, at a time when the country was struggling with the debate over veiled Muslim girls in public schools. In fact, the French Ministry of Education has approved the book for inclusion in the literary curriculum of private schools in France, where it is promoted as an educational tool to represent and foster a liberal viewpoint on Muslim cultural practices. (973)
In other words, the publication of Persepolis coincided with a major national controversy which were paralleled in the book. Beyond that, Satrapi's work provided a crucial method for reinterpreting the veil not only as a symbol of an alien culture, but as an object that helped to explain the experiences of members of the other culture. The inclusion of Persepolis as a text for French private schools allows them to mediate the otherness of the veiled Muslim girls in their schools and increase tolerance of them in the class environment.

------------------

Submitted after deadline:

Sarah Coffin-Karlin
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 300
25 February 2013
Whitlock Article, page 969

Q: According to Whitlock, Iraqi blogger Salam Pax tried to read Persepolis twice before he finally got through it. Why does he change his mind about the book? How does Whitlock say that his change of heart is “important for thinking about the pleasures and pains of reading autographics” (969)?

A: Pax explains his change of heart by saying that he has seen the similarities between Iranians and Iraqis. He says he initially “winced” at the book (he does not explain why, but presumably because of its format), but after reading it in one fell swoop discovered its value and beauty. “I had the urge to start translating it and throwing copies of it in the streets of Baghdad,” he claims. He explains his change of opinion by saying that he discovered the similarities between Iraqis and Iranians, especially with what was happening in Iraq in 2003. “Why can’t we learn from other people’s mistakes?” he asks.

According to Whitlock, his change of heart is significant because it demonstrates the power of relating to autobiographies. We as the reader need to find closure within the comic itself; comics provide a unique format because the breaks are provided for us in the form of the gutters, or spaces in between panels. Space and time can fluctuate from panel to panel: we can be in one place, but in the next panel we’re somewhere else four years later. In this way, we are also exposed to different cultures and ideals because we need to move through them in sequence.

Posted by: douglas phillips at February 25, 2013 01:14 PM

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