Persepolis book coverThe Oswego Reading Initiative (ORI) is pleased to announce The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi as the selection for summer 2009. Each year the members of the SUNY Oswego campus and the Oswego community get together to identify a book to read during the summer.  This book also becomes the focus of discussions for some of the courses in the following academic year with many events outside of the classroom that relate to it as well.


Persepolis tells the story of Marjane Satrapi’s youth living through the Islamic Revolution and the war with Iraq. It is funny, witty, and at times very sad, but it is Marjane’s life told in a very popular genre of graphic novels. This book is above all an extraordinary coming of age story, especially, when you read her life path in Vienna as teenager and return to Iran and the vivid display of her feeling displaced and trying disparately to fit in. It is a story not just about a region of the world that we need to know more about but a story that we felt our incoming first year students would connect with. Persepolis has won many awards and Satrapi's genius in use of the drawings when telling this story, without question, comes to light from page one.


We offer a number of programs during the academic year that connect to the ORI selection. Persepolis is an easy book to find connecting activities for; look for these program that range from talks about Islam and Iran to presentations by experts on graphic novels, and performances by artists.

Graphic Novel with Calvin Reid

American artist, journalist, writer, and editor talks about Graphic novels as one of the fastest growing categories in publishing and storytelling.
Wednesday, September 23
12:40-1:35 pm, Campus Center 118

Understanding Islam: Q&A Session with Dr. Ulises Mejias

An interactive session conducted aimed at creating an open and candid dialog about Islam.
Wednesday, October 7 
2:40 pm, Campus Center 114

and Wednesday October 7,
7 pm, Campus Center 114

Women in Islam with Dr. Asma Barlas

Director of the Center for the Study of Culture, Race, and Ethnicity at Ithaca College will talk about role of women in Islam.
Wednesday, October 21
12:40-1:35pm, Campus Center 118.

Blogging in Iran: A Phantom Public? with Dr. Ulises Mejias

This talk explores the multifaceted role that bloggers play in Iran. 
Wednesday, November 18
12:40 pm, Campus Center 114 

Iranian films

Wednesdays 6 - 8 pm
Campus Center, 220

October 21
The Cow (1969), Daryush Mehrjui

October 28
The Little Stranger (1986), Bahram Beizai, Bashu

November 4
Smell of Camphor, Fragrance of Jasmine (2000), BahmanFarmanara

November 11
The Cyclist (1989), Mohsen Makhmalbaf

November 18
Close-Up (1990), Abbas Kiarostami

December 2
The Apple (1998), Samira Makhmalbaf

December 9
Offside (2006), Jafar Panahi

Please consider reading the white paper by Dr. Said Atri, Professor of Economics at SUNY Oswego.