Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books

Front Cover
Random House, 2004 - Biography & Autobiography - 356 pages
111 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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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - dbsovereign - LibraryThing

A book about literature and how it effects different people in different ways. Some fascinating insights into Iranian culture and life in Tehran. Also introduces us to some women who live heroic lives behind the scenes. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - BookConcierge - LibraryThing

This memoir asks "why should anyone read fiction?" We had a great discussion, but we wanted to know more about the lives of the students. At times it read more like an academic paper, using Western ... 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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