Persepolis ~ Our Education


Our Education

Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi has caused me to consider the difference in education between what I have experienced and what others have experienced; not only students in America but students in different countries. This made me start to consider what makes a student want to protest, how they voice their grievances, and caused me to compare the differences between the desire to protest versus the need to protest. In Satrapi’s novel, her family participates in a demonstration, and Marji decides to join them (76). She, a student, demonstrated and distributed pamphlets in a possibly dangerous situation. Not only was it dangerous, but violence ensued. Throughout the trials she faced, Marji never stopped protesting. She rebelled by cracking jokes during the remembrances of soldiers (95). Her reason was that every day they were faced with despair, and every day the lightheartedness of childhood faded. From there, I began my research into student protests in Iran and learned that students participated in demonstrations for many reasons, in many places.

One New York Times article covered a protest at Amir Kabir University in 2007 over student activists who were arrested for “shaming Islam” (Fahti) in an article they wrote. Over 100 students gathered there to march in protest. Another article in 2003 showed students protesting, initially about university privatization, that grew into a fight for more “social, economic and political freedom” (Macfarquhar). These articles displayed students combating the restraints forced upon them, and fighting to evolve from old-fashioned ways. Both articles depicted how students are not afraid to fight for their education, rights, and others’ rights. As the second article’s quote states, “Just be patient. We are trying to have a revolution.” More than anything, my experience reading Persepolis and researching students who have also protested has made me reconsider how I can or can’t relate to their stories and the bravery they demonstrated.


Fathi, Nazila. “Students in Iran Protest Sentences for 3 Activists.” New York Times, 23 Oct. 2007, p. A7(L). The New York Accessed 26 Oct. 2021.

Macfarquhar, Neil. “Student Protests in Tehran Become Nightly Fights for Freedom.” New York Times, 14 June 2003, p. A3. The New York Accessed 26 Oct. 2021.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash