Reading Lolita in Tehran A Memoir in Books by Azar Nafisi A Book Review


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hey guys today I'm gonna talk about reading Lolita and Tehran a memoir in books by azar Nafisi if I mispronounce that I do apologize I didn't so much read this book as listen to it as an audiobook so I'm going to be showing the original cover or the cover for the audiobook now the book was published in about 2004 so a little bit after 9/11 happened but it's so much it doesn't go so much in with the American ideal or situation with Islam or Islamic countries it's about one woman's experience pre and post revolution in Iran the 1970s revolution which brought a more extreme more severe form of Islam to Iran and she disgusts basically her day-to-day life and her situation before and after the Revolution basically such as able to wear clothes have her her regular clothes instead of the coverings that being able to allow wear makeup to allowed to have their hair out this isn't a easy breed by any means it's actually a little depressing but I feel like this book will show you a different worldview it doesn't offer in my opinion doesn't offer any solutions is just what the reality is and I feel like that's how the author meant feels too because she wants it to change from what I experienced or from from what I perceive but she can't really do much and she's just trying to figure out what how to make the best of a bad situation there's some story most of the names have been changed in the book she mentions this at the beginning except one one I'll bring up one part of the story that really struck me she was talking about this girl who came to see her because she's a professor at a university at what certain points in the novel and she has like her students come in to talk to her from time to time especially the female students and she mentions this one girl come in seer and situations happen and whatnot and then she's like I will use her real name because it doesn't matter because she's dead now so it doesn't matter anymore I really strike a chord with me I don't know I guess I just I don't know if I was just listening at the right time or my mood there really struck a chord it was I felt very nihilistic depressed about it I don't know anyways I digress the beginning and the end of the book start with like impromptu class about English literature because that's what she teaches that's what she's passionate about she uses classic literature to compare her story to Tehran Iran such as The Great Gatsby Lolita and Daisy Miller as well and a few others those are the L as well as Pride and Prejudice she uses certain parts of the stories and symbolism to describe the Islamic Republic in the roles and the situations how she feels and just like the oppression she suffers she also talks about like what it's like to go to a movie theater how everything's really censored there and I thought that was interesting I remember one part of the story that she goes - it's like a concert a music concert but they can't and it was for I'm not sure if it was like a opera or like kind of like a semi rock thing but she said they had to be real Stern face for the musicians when they played there was no dancing there weren't they no one was allowed to sing they weren't allowed to sway their bodies back and forth or you know like kind of dancing or anything so they just had to sit there straight bass playing their instruments and the way she describes the music is that makes you want to move that it makes you want to you know it has more of a beat to it but they were guards or police kind of like a moral police those aren't the words she used but I can't think of exactly the term she used for those at that point but they were like walking the theater made sure you know no one was talking to quiet no one was getting out of hand and she would go back and forth between like situations like that to what Iran used to be like when you had more freedom and everything else and she goes a list to with her friends both male and female but a lot of this focuses on women's rights or lack thereof in Iran in Iran and so she tends to focus more on her female friends not always but for the most part and how they're oppressed how sometimes they're forced into marriages how the husbands can divorce them at any time in the legal procedures usually tend to favor the males and how just basically the abuse like physical domestic violence in certain situations like that also about how woman has to please her father like basically doing what he wants her to do to marry who he wants her to that there's little to no romantic involvement so much that the talks of a lot about sexual repression and females and how males can't deal with sexuality I remember in one instance in the book and this is one of the things that struck me as odd or different I do live in America so we do for what it's worth we do tend to have a little bit more freedoms than most places are and then some other country and it talks about how mail was sitting in a class and he's seen the back of this girl's neck like right there just a little bit and he complained to the teacher that this actually aroused him and basically I'll give this much away I guess he dies later on and the girls make fun of him for basically after he died they made fun of him like being so zealous so religious so this and that so prudish I guess would be a good word for and the teachers like yeah he shouldn't make fun of them but he was kind of like that and basically they told her that story with the girl with the neck that he was complaining that he was getting sexually turned on by the sight of the back of her neck as the reason for the justification of them being able to make fun of them after death and the book is full of situations like these not not always sensual but like just the policies the procedures how life is or was up to like mid mid early 90s in Iran and this isn't a book he would go into if you want to be in a good mood this I don't usually tend to read a lot of nonfiction but I did choose this one and I do feel like it's expanded my horizons I do feel like I have a little bit better understanding of human nature and how the world works including with like religious fanaticism women's rights as well our lack thereof and sometimes just the sadness of the human experience now it's kind of I have a little air of depression but I hope you guys enjoyed this I guess my opinion on them if you want something to expand your mind or to help you grow as a person I definitely recommend this novel it's not a light read by any means but I do feel like if you do choose to read this novel you will gain some experience insight and you will have more open mind or more awareness of certain situations after reading this novel I have read reviews of it and a lot of people think she comes off as a little - the author comes off a little too trying to think of the right word like overly educated talks belittles I don't I didn't feel that during the novel I felt like yeah she I mean eight I would feel different - about living those certain situations I felt like the author wrote it very well and it's a difficult subject to tackle I highly recommend it if you want something low heavier to read not in length of the book but of situations and to help you expand your horizons if you liked the review please give a thumbs up and if you didn't want to subscribe please subscribe I will probably be doing another video in the near future about like what I both since this was the audio book what type of reading media I like mostly its ebooks I'll give you a there but uh I thank you for watching and if you like and subscribe I can subscribe thank you