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Dawn's picture

The Image of the Veil

The imagery of Persepolis is an interesting change from the Book of Salt. With that text, we were expected to not trust the images "before our eyes" that were conveyed through words, and rely on extrasensory perception, taste being the most important. Now we are using the visual lens again, and as readers we are not only creating visuals from word meanings, we are able to see exactly what the author means, because pictures are provided for ushave really enjoyed not only the shifts in perspective in terms of how the stories can be told, but how they can be read as well.

When I opened to the first pavge of the book, it reminded me of the on that Anne has asked us about nearly every text we have read. "Is this a feminist text?" In this case, in my opinion, the answer is undoubtedly, yes. The first thing we see is the marginalization of gender: the veil. Satrapi sets up the first image to show how autonomizing the veil can be, and how unhappy the young girls are when forced to wear it. The teacher is given an an oppressive role, because she is forcing it on her students. I absolutely love the scene where the girls clearly do not want to take the veil seriously. First of all, it is much to hot! Then, it becomes a toy - a jumprope, horse reigns, and a "monster of darkness". The one part that is slightly worrisome is the girl in the upper middle of the picture who is talking about "execution in the name of freedom." This takes a dark turn on the children's fun and forshadows the real issue at hand - demonstrations for freedom from opression. Satrapi's mother is an example of the protesters, and it all starts with the veil.

On a side note: I never realized that the veil mandate was so recent (1980). I also really love the image of Marx and God - the same, but Marx has curlier hair!

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