Marjane’s Life and Character

Topics: Marie Curie

Effects of setting on the adult Marjane Satrapi’s personality

The setting in the veil is that of strife, Islamic religion, and a change in political regime. The setting, just like the environment affects the characters’ story behavior and personality. Adult Marjane loved freedom, brought about from the moment she was ten when they had to wear veils although the previous regime supported equal rights and was non-religious. The rebelliousness for freedom starts from the story when she says,

She wanted to be a prophet for the fact that the house cleaner could not eat at the same table as them.

Her father also realized that she had written the letters for Mehri after seeing her handwriting on them. In addition, she participated in rallies demonstrating against the new regime from a young age. Demonstrations were triggered by the fact that there was no right to freedom for women. For example, officers insulted her mother for not wearing a veil by saying that, “women like her should be pushed up against the wall and then thrown in the garbage”(Foster, 2010).

Effect of time, place, and history on Marjane’s personality

The change in regime in Iran started happening when Marjane was young hence she had a taste of both sides of life. That is, the freedom side ruled by the French and Shah’s regime. This experience led to her rebellious nature since she witnessed demonstrations all over the country against the new laws passed (Foster, 2010). Being not happy with all that was happening in the nation, she developed an urge of being a social activist to change the laws in the country.

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With time, she also realized that not all her plans would work like going to university so that she could be a scientist like Marie Curie.

The fact that she was born into a rebellious environment contributed to her being an activist for the people to fight for equal rights in society, especially for women. Raised in a modern family that did not follow Islamic laws the letter contributed to her rebellious and spoilt nature. This is evident when she fails to listen to her parents and takes Mehri to demonstrate at the matches. The fact that she went into the basement to smoke a cigarette she had stolen from her uncle proves that she was spoilt.

History played a significant role in shaping her character in that she got the drive to be a representative for the people from the historical stories she and her friends read, about revolutionary people such as Che Guevara and Fidel Castro. Not only did they read these stories but also imitated the characters. Furthermore, the history of her grandfather showed that the family was proud of her for being a communist. This pride is evident in that; they were beating up a boy whose father killed communists. She said, ‘My idea was to put nails between our fingers like American brass knuckles and to attack Ramin'(Foster, 2010). Besides, her uncle Anoosh told her that her family history must live on through such stories of communism.

Additional information on Marjane Satrapi’s life

Satrapi was born in Tehran and studied at the ‘Lycee Francais’ after the abolishment of her previous school. Her parents were modern parents who were Marxists in the United Soviets States of Russia (USSR) government. They were social idealists and supported her dream of independence but remained in Iran. This is because her father was not willing to let go of his social class for another country. During the war, her mother used to tape the windows of their family home due to fear of the bombs dropped by the Iraq troops from the air. The moral police arrested her for wearing English clothes; she tried to convince them that the clothes’ message supported Malcolm X who was the Black Muslim leader in America to avoid punishment for ‘immoral dressing.’ She studied at her college in Tehran after fleeing Vienna. In Vienna, she lived with her parent’s friend who later chased her out of the house.

From the essay, evidence shows that the environment contributed to Marjane’s personality and character. In shaping her character, everything surrounding her played a role in developing what she came to be. Thus from the story, we learn that our environment and the people we associate ourselves with define a lot about our character and who we end up being at the end of it all.

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Marjane’s Life and Character. (2022, May 13). Retrieved from

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