Persepolis is the animation film adaptation of Marjane Satrapi’s successful graphic novel, about her childhood in Iran – first under the Shah, then increasingly repressed after the Islamic Revolution.
Although Marjane’s grandmother and parents are initially delighted that Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi is removed from power, this changes soon after, when the new rulers turn out to pursue even more repressive policies. During the Islamic Revolution, moreover, the position of women in society in particular appears to suffer from repression.
Nevertheless, Satrapi is not an easily pliable person, which is reinforced by her stays in several European countries and she has a strong opinion of her own. Yet even there, she cannot easily fit in as a woman of Iranian descent. Upon returning to her homeland, she finds that much has changed and that failure to follow the rules carries severe penalties. Nevertheless, her grandmother regularly reminds her to live by her ideals, so that her grandfather and uncle Anouche did not die in vain fighting for freedom.