Persepolis and Islamic Revolution

If you have not read Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi, then you are truly missing out. If you are at all interested in modern history this is a personalized memoir account of growing up in Iran in the 1980s and coming into adulthood in the 1990s. You can also watch the movie for much of the same context and history.

It details what it means to be a child in a tumultuous war zone and trying to make sense of the lies told by powers that be, versus the truth known by family and record.

As an American it is important to understand much of these international conflicts and the roles that we play in them. For the Islamic Revolution it meant that we supported the overthrow of a dynasty for a dictatorship. Then when Iraq went to war against Iran in 1982 the U.S. supported Saddam Hussein. Which inevitably contributed to conflicts in the 2000s.

Though not an expert on these conflict and American involvement it’s important to know that we played a part well before the war on terrorism.

For more reading:

Oxford Journals

NPR

Iran Revolution

History of Bachelor/Bachelorette Parties

Though today it is a deep tradition to have a “last night of freedom” before a couple gets hitched.  Though it has manifested into a modern tradition of drinking, penis straws, strippers and embarrassing moments for the bride or groom to be, many of these traditions go back centuries.

The Spartans were believed to have started the tradition in the 5th century B.C.E., having a final party before the friend entered into married life.

Also known as a stag party in some parts of the world and times of the past, these events also included heavy drinking, but often a black tie dinner at the Grooms Father’s home. This modern manifestation came with increased options for cheap travel, and modern cultural norms of clubs and drinking.

For women Bachelorette or Hen parties became a part after the sexual revolution of the 1960s, allowing women to have just as much fun of the men and moving away from the traditional bridal showers. Which were often private affairs with closest family and friends, and a chance for older women of a family unit to give advice and share gifts. Today Hen or Bachelorette parties follow much the same formula of drink, games and shenanigans.

Though in some parts of the world other traditions exist that go back centuries, such as the “blackening of the bride” which happens in parts of Scotland. Or Salty Brides in parts of China, where bride, mother and grandmother cry for a month before the wedding.

Learn more at TIME, and 25 Extremely Strange Wedding Traditions.