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Vale book club takes up Tehran memoir

The Vale Book Club will discuss “Reading Lolita in Tehran,” by Azar Nafisi, on Thursday, June 2 at 7 p.m. at the home of Carol Spears.

The session will be facilitated by Twilla Hayden.

Nafisi’s memoir displays her commitment to literature and the students she taught in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Over two years, she gathered seven of her most committed students each Thursday to read forbidden Western classics – even as Islamic morality squads staged arbitrary raids in Tehran, fundamentalists seized hold of the universities, and a physically blind censor stifled artistic expression.

In their teacher’s living room, these girls risked removing their veils and immersed themselves in the worlds of Jane Austen, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Henry James and Vladimir Nabokov. Their stories become intertwined with the tales they are reading.

Critics describe the book . . .