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An argument about The Complete Persepolis

Accordingly, this paper delves on the Biographical and Bildungsroman aspects of the novel to support the proposition that self-awareness comes with both pain and happiness. Biographical Aspects The philosophical and literary origins of Biography are linked to John Dryden who coined the term and suggested that it refers to a personal recount of a particular configuration of events, time, and space (Amigoni 55). For instance, biographical narratives often focus on the significant events, people and places throughout a person’s life although without necessarily articulating his/her personal and moral learning from those events. Further, Amigoni states that a biographical narrative helps in shaping public identity as it allows people to take pride in the events they participated during their lifetime, as well as articulate their achievements and career. The concept of biographical narrative applies to The Complete Persepolis wherein Satrapi tells the turbulent political times of Iran. Specifically, she recounts the people she encounters, places she had visited, and the kind of society she lived in. Events and Places Satrapi’s portrayal of significant events and places becomes more vivid through her illustrations. According to Schroeder, Satrapi’s black-and-white illustrations of the daily life of her family and the society portray her perception about her family and the existing political condition of her country during the Islamic Revolution (14). For instance, in her illustrations on the imposition of wearing veils, Satrapi shows her childish perceptions about social norms and rules, considering her outward opposition against wearing those veils and her confusion on what those veils are for (3). Satrapi recalls such an event as part of the Islamic Revolution. Aside from Islamic Revolution, Satrapi also recalls the Cultural Revolution wherein the Iranian society considers different cultural and leadership views, particularly monopoly, socialism and monarchy. People The most significant people in the life of Marjane are her parents, teachers, and friends both in Iran and Austria. For instance, Sichani mentions that the people in Austria influence Marjane’s physical and psychological transformations, which led to her self-revelation through exploring her sexuality with her friends there (21). Specifically, Julie, Marjane’s friend in Austria, introduces Marjane to a culture of independence and sexuality while Siamak and Mohsen opens Marjane’s eyes to the actual chaos in Iran’s political world. Marjane also takes lessons from writers, political activists, and social philosophers during her time including Ashraf Darvishan, who wrote about division in social classes, and the Iranian Shah, who took a militaristic rule over Iran. Toward Self-Awareness With the influence of people and events, Marjane was able to analyze the structure and norms of her society. such influences also drive her to evaluate the differences among societies. Through those people, Marjane sees the real world as both a torment and opportunity to exercise one’s freedom. For instance, in knowing the condition of political prisoners, Marjane understood the political turmoil in Iran, although, she does not see the implication of those issues yet in her personal life with her young age. Moreover, her family, friends, and prominent social