Persepolis (comic)

Persepolis (comic)

title = Persepolis and Persepolis 2
comic_color = background:#c0c0c0

caption = Cover of "Persepolis" Books 1 and 2
schedule =
format = limited series graphic novel
publisher = Pantheon Books
date = (US Edition) 2003, 2004, 2005
issues = 2
main_char_team =
past_current_color = background:#ff9275
writers = Marjane Satrapi
artists = Marjane Satrapi
pencillers =
inkers =
colorists =

"Persepolis" (ISBN 0-224-08039-3) is a French-language autobiographical graphic novel by Marjane Satrapi depicting her childhood in Iran after the revolution. The title is a reference to the historical town of Persepolis.

Drawn in black and white, the graphic novel found great popularity following its release. The English edition combines the first two French books and was translated by Blake Ferris and Satrapi's husband, Mattias Ripa. The French editions of "Persepolis 3" and "Persepolis 4" were combined into a single volume, "Persepolis 2" for the United States market. In the U.S., the "Persepolis" series is published by Pantheon Books.


"Persepolis" details Satrapi's life during the war between Iran and Iraq. "Persepolis" (the first book in the English language edition) depicts Satrapi's childhood in Iran, and "Persepolis 2" depicts her high school years in Vienna, Austria and her return to Iran where Satrapi attended college, married, and later divorced before moving to France, where she now lives. Hence, the series is not only a memoir, but a Bildungsroman.

The second book of "Persepolis" won the Angoulême International Comics Festival Prize for Scenario in Angoulême, France, for its script and in Vitoria, Spain, for its commitment against totalitarianism. It has been translated into English, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Greek, Swedish and other languages.


The graphic novel was generally well-received following its release. For example, Time magazine included the first part in its "Best Comix of 2003" list.Fact|date=September 2008


"Persepolis" has been adapted into an animated film, by Sony Pictures Classics. The film is voiced by Catherine Deneuve, Chiara Mastroianni, Danielle Darrieux and Simon Abkarian, among others. It debuted at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival, where it won the Jury Prize. The film drew complaints from the Iranian government even before its debut at the festival. [Rosemberg, Claire. " [ Cannes cartoon of life under ayatollahs angers Iran] ." "Middle East Times." May 22, 2007] [Jaafar, Ali. " [ Iran decries 'Persepolis' jury prize ] ." "" May 29, 2007] The film was nominated for an Academy Award in 2008 for best animated feature.

Characters in Persepolis and Persepolis 2

Marjane 'Marji' Satrapi - the rebellious young Iranian heroine. Marjane goes to school in Vienna and then comes back. At the end of Persepolis 2, she goes to France. She is the author of the Persepolis books and still lives in France today.


Ebi Satrapi - Marjane's father. Ebi is a very honest and good man who demonstrates against the Shah and then the Islamic Republic. He lets his daughter live as she wants, but nudges her along the way.

Taji Satrapi - Marjane's mother. She also demonstrated against the Shah and the Islamic Republic until she is involved in a violent demonstration against the obligatory wearing of head scarves, in which another protester is stabbed in the leg. Taji has known the oppression of the Shahs and the Republic; her father was a Communist who was constantly arrested and thrown in prison. She is somewhat stricter than Ebi.

Grandma - Marjane's grandmother. She is Taji's mother. She also knows how the Shahs made them suffer because her husband was always getting thrown in jail. She has a strong sense of right and wrong.

Uncle Anoush - Marjane's beloved uncle. He loved her very much and wished she was his own daughter. He worked for his uncle Fereydoon, who declared an Azeri province of Iran independent. Fereydoon was thrown in jail and executed while Anoosh escaped to the USSR. When Anoosh came back he was thrown in jail for 9 years. When he was freed he met Marjane and loved her immediately. He gave her a swan he made out of breadcrumbs while in jail and told her stories. Then, he was arrested following the Islamic revolution and asked to see Marjane as his last visitor. He gave her another bread swan. Anoosh was executed soon after, leaving Marjane distraught.

Friends in Tehran

Mehri - Marjane's au pair. She is illiterate, complicating her romance with one of their neighbors as Marjane serves as their go between.

Arash - one of Marjane's street friends.

Kia - one of Marjane's street friends who fights in the war and loses his arm and leg. He is also confined to a wheelchair. Pardisse - a girl whose father is killed in the bombing of Baghdad.

Kaveh - Marjane's friend, whom she has an innocent crush on

Siamak - a prisoner released after the fall of the Shah. Flees Iran after his sister is murdered by agents of the Republic.

Mohsen - another prisoner, drowned in his bathtub.

Mali - Taji's childhood friend whose town is bombed

Laly - Siamak's daughter

Neda - Daughter of the Baba-Levys, a Jewish family living across the street from the Satrapis. She and her family are killed when their building is struck by a missile.

Friends in Vienna

Zozo - the grumpy Iranian-turned-Austrian who takes Marjane in for ten days

Housah - Zozo's overworked husband, whom she blames for the family's relative poverty in Austria.

Sherin - Their banal daughter. Lucia - Marjane's Tyrolean roomie at the catholic boarding house where she is dumped by Zozo.

Julie - Marjane's 18 year old friend who eventually becomes her roommate. Her sexual promiscuity amazes Marjane at first.

Momo - Marjane's 16 year old friend, a nihilist who only hangs out with her because she has known death and war.

Oliver & Thierry - Swiss orphans who deal drugs in between classes.

Ingrid - Marjane's friend who teaches her the art of meditation.


Enrique - A Spaniard/Austrian who turns out to be gay.

Jean-Paul - Only likes Marjane as a friend

Markus - the Viennese love of Marjane's life and her first real boyfriend, who slept with her and who breaks her heart after two years of dating, when Marjane finds him in bed with another girl on her birthday.

Reza - Marjane's Iranian boyfriend who eventually becomes her husband. After three years of marriage, they divorce.


Frau Doctor Heller - One of Marjane's landlords in Austria, a crackpot psychiatrist (in Marjane's estimation) who accuses her of stealing her brooch and thinks she is being a prostitute when she sees Markus has come over.

Svetlana - the Yugoslavian chef at the Cafe Sole where Marjane works for a while. When a costumer pinches Marjane's butt, Svetlana spits into his food in revenge.


External links

* [ "Persepolis" official film site]
* [ Production blog for the film]
* [ New York Times article about the film] (Jan. 21, 2007)

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