Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books

Front Cover
Random House, 2004 - Biography & Autobiography - 356 pages
126 Reviews
Every Thursday morning for two years in the Islamic Republic of Iran, a bold and inspired teacher named Azar Nafisi secretly gathered seven of her most committed female students to read forbidden Western classics. As Islamic morality squads staged arbitrary raids in Tehran, fundamentalists seized hold of the universities, and a blind censor stifled artistic expression, the girls in Azar Nafisi's living room risked removing their veils and immersed themselves in the worlds of Jane Austen, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Henry James, and Vladimir Nabokov. In this extraordinary memoir, their stories become intertwined with the ones they are reading. Reading Lolita in Tehran is a remarkable exploration of resilience in the face of tyranny and a celebration of the liberating power of literature.

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User Review  - SadieBabie - LibraryThing

I really enjoyed this memoir of life in Iran, told in the context of Western literature. I'll admit, I did get lost in the vast cast of characters and the political situation, not to mention the in ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - meredk - LibraryThing

In many ways this is a remarkable book. The author gives us an inside view of the frightening changes in Iran after the ouster of the shah, and weaves that view in with analyses of several of her ... Read full review

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About the author (2004)

Azar Nafisi is a professor at Johns Hopkins University. She won a fellowship from Oxford and taught English literature at the University of Tehran, the Free Islamic University and Allameh Tabatabai University in Iran. She was expelled from the University of Tehran for refusing to wear the veil and left Iran for America in 1997. She has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and The New Republic, and is the author of Anti-Terra: A Critical Study of Vladimir Nabokov's Novels. She lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband and two children.

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