Who’s afraid of Persepolis?
April 9, 2013

In March, the critically acclaimed graphic novel Persepolis made headlines in Chicago–but not for the reasons you might think.

The book is an autobiographical account by Marjane Satrapi about growing up in Iran during and after the Iranian Revolution–and her flight to live in Europe after the post-revolutionary regime became more repressive. Chicago Public Schools (CPS) officials ordered Satrapi’s book pulled from the shelves of school libraries. Administrators reportedly not only required that the book be pulled from libraries (which is against the law) and classrooms, but they ordered that it not be taught in class.

After an outcry by teachers and students, CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett backtracked, issuing a letter in which she denied the district had banned the book, but maintaining the order that it not to be taught in the seventh grade curriculum because of its “graphic images.”

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