What is the summary for Part 3, Chapters 16-18 of Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books?

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Michael Foster eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Nafisi’s class continues its study of Daisy Miller. They focus on whether or not Daisy is to be considered a "bad girl." When asked by a student what she herself thinks, Nafisi admits to feeling irritated. She notices that some of the most ardent revolutionists in her class cannot accept ambiguity; people, in books or in real life, are to be seen in black and white, good or bad. Some see Daisy’s death as the direct result of her "sins." Others see it as a tragedy, and are allowed to feel some sympathy with her character.

Nafisi’s students are assigned to keep notebooks of their assignments. Nafisi reflects on how the notebooks reflect not just on the students’ connections with the novels but also on their own personalities. Some are neat and concise, echoing the opinions of others. Some reflect a firm commitment to the revolution, viewing each work through the prism of the student’s own ideology. Mrs. Rezvan reminds Nafisi of her own assertion that it is Nafisi’s role to put something in the heads of the students, that their thoughts are empty of any original thought, as are those of the country’s intelligentsia.

Nafisi describes one of her students, Mina, as a "perfectly equipped failure." Mina had been a teacher, studying in America, when she was recalled to Iran. Instead of being offered a teaching position, she has been expelled, and never teaches again.

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Reading Lolita in Tehran

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