Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood

by Marjane Satrapi

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In Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood, what effects does Marjane's family have on her? Specifically, how impactful were her grandfather, her Uncle Anoosh, and her parents? 

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In Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood, Marjane Satrapi is greatly affected by her family members, as they shape her ideas, give her a sense of cultural heritage, and encourage her to speak out against injustice. Let's look at this in more detail.

Marjane's parents hold modern views about the world, and they teach them to their daughter. They are all about discovering the truth and holding to it even if that means being persecuted for it. They also realize, though, that they are living in a dangerous situation after the Islamic Revolution, and they are forced to give in sometimes simply to keep the family safe. Marjane's mother, for instance, begins to wear a headscarf in public, and she hangs up curtains in the windows of the family home so that the family can continue to live as they wish without anyone seeing.

These ideas and practices affect Marjane greatly, for they set her own ideas firmly in place. Marjane's parents also give her the courage to speak up for what she believes, even though sometimes they remove her from situations that are dangerous.

Marjane's grandfather had once been a prince in Iran, and this gives Marjane a proud heritage that she holds to in the face of the Shah's rule. Finally, Marjane's uncle Anoosh is a political prisoner who is eventually executed. Marjane goes to visit him while he is in prison. She sees firsthand what it is like for someone to be imprisoned under the regime. When Anoosh dies, Marjane struggles with her faith in God and begins speaking out at school, especially when her teacher says that there are not political prisoners. Marjane knows otherwise and, with her uncle's courage, says so.

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