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Discussion Question 13 for Reading Lolita in Tehran

Special Announcement: Join the conversation and you could win a free copy of the next book the Global Book Club will be discussing.  Leave your comment on any of the posts related to Reading Lolita in Tehran between now and November 28, 2009 and you will be eligible to win!  The winner will be chosen at random and notified the first week of December.

Question answered by Rosanne Rosen, Sr. Vice President of Operations at PTPI

13.  If you could meet the author, what questions would you ask her?

I would have so many questions for Professor Nafisi.  It’s been 12 years since she left Tehran.

  • What are her thoughts on what is happening in Iran today?
  • Does she still correspond with any of the young women who were in the book club?
  • She doesn’t talk much in the book about her children – what paths have they chosen in life?
  • Has she gone back to Iran?  If so, by herself or with her children?
  • Does she still discuss some of these heady topics with her students?  What about her family?   Is she still involved in politics?
  • She wrote in her epilogue that that she promised not to talk or write about the Magician.  Respecting that promise, is there anything she could tell us about the Magician?  He was a fascinating and central character in her book and leaves the reader to wonder who he was, how she found him and what happened to him?
  • Is life in the United States what she expected?  What surprised her the most – what about her family?  Does she still ever have moments that she feels “irrelevant” now that she has written a best-selling novel which has impacted thousands and is a professor at Johns Hopkins?

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4 Responses to “Discussion Question 13 for Reading Lolita in Tehran”

  1. I left a lengthy reply to the book on Nov 28th and I don’t see it at all. This is my first blog experience and I can say that it isn’t very easy to navigate around the blog entries. All I wanted to see was the comments on the book and to make sure that mine was entered. I was very displeased with the book. I thought it was boring and she wandered around the topic. What she said about the dehumanizing of women and the trials and tribulations of being a woman in Iran was certainly important to know about and to understand. But I think she could have done it in 50 pages. I didn’t like the wandering in and out of literature that she referenced. I also feel that with this book we have turned off any men who have wanted to belong to the book club. My husband started reading it in preparation for our Dec 6th book club meeting and ended up speed reading it for he too didn’t like it. I hope that the next book is more appealing to both men and women. Other books such as Two Cups of Tea, Wild Swans, Chinese Lessons, or Greg Mortensen’s newest book, Stones, would be more appealing than Lolita in Tehran.

    • admin says:

      Hi Carolyn! Thank you for sharing your thoughts! I apologize that your previous reply disappeared (we’ll still include you in the list of names entered in the drawing for a copy of book #2) and we will see what we can do to make navigation a bit easier. We’re thrilled that you and your husband both took the time to get involved in this new initiative and certainly hope that the next book will be more appealing. (So far it is getting rave reviews from our staff readers.) Your suggestions are great and we’ll add them to the list of books that we discuss when choosing book three. Have a great time at the book club meeting!

  2. Kristine Knutter (PTPI staff) says:

    I too, would like to know the answers to these questions. I would guess that the Magician and Nafisi have not been in contact since she left Iran. He seemed set on discontinuing communication when she decided to leave. I think this is a cowardly way to deal with a friend leaving. Perhaps he feels it would be too painful to try to continue a long distance relationship and he wants to remember what they had together while Nifisi lived in Iran.

  3. K.Saroja says:

    I have several questions to the author Nafisi.
    What motivated her to write this excellent book in the first place?
    Is Magician her figment of imagination? if not then has she kept in touch with him now?
    Is she happy having made the decision to leave Iran 12 years ago. Any second thoughts?
    Is she contemplating writing another book?
    How is her husband Bijan and children doing in US
    Has US given her what she expected of her? and so on.

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