The Republic of Imagination

The Republic of Imagination

America in Three Books

Book - 2014
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The best-selling author of Reading Lolita in Tehran presents an impassioned tribute to the importance of fiction to democracy that blends memoir with close readings of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Babbitt and The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter.
"A passionate hymn to the power of fiction to change people's lives. Ten years ago, Azar Nafisi electrified readers with her bestseller, Reading Lolita in Tehran, which told the story of how, against the backdrop of morality squads and executions, she taught The Great Gatsby and other classics to her eager students in Iran. In this followup, Nafisi has written an impassioned, beguiling, and utterly original tribute to the vital importance of fiction in a democratic society. What Reading Lolita in Tehran was for Iran, The Republic of Imagination is for America. Taking her cue from a challenge thrown to her in Seattle, where a skeptical reader told her that Americans don't care about books the way they did back in Iran, she energetically responds to those who say fiction has nothing to teach us. Blending memoir and polemic with close readings of her favorite American novels -- The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Babbitt, and The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, among others -- she invites us to join her as citizens of her 'Republic of Imagination,' a country where the villains are conformity and orthodoxy and the only passport to entry is a free mind and a willingness to dream. Azar Nafisi lives in Washington, D.C."--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York, New York : Viking, [2014]
ISBN: 9780670026067
Branch Call Number: 813.009 NAF NVD
Characteristics: 338 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Sís, Peter 1949-


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Feb 20, 2015

I found the part about James Baldwin, in the epilogue, particularly powerful.

Jan 22, 2015

The writer sustains a wise conversation with three American classic works (Huckleberry Finn; Babbitt; and Carson McCuller's The Heart is a Lonely Hunter). Nafisi describes the influence of each of these works in her reading and teaching lives (one life, integrated), and the importance of the books in American life and perception. Her discussions of meanings intersect and mingle with her views of her native society (Iran) and with her adopted one (American). Well worth reading and reflecting on--since what she has to say about writers and the humanities in our contemporary society are both crucial.

Jan 14, 2015

Excellently written perspective on life in the US using great American novels as the matrix. Well worth the time to read.

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