Who are you?’ Isn’t this what every book asks of us as we chase its characters, trying to find out what they are reluctant to reveal? Is it not also the one essential thing we ask ourselves as human beings, as we struggle to make the choices that will define us? I can describe myself as a mother, a wife, a friend, a teacher, a sister, a writer, a reader … So it goes. Yet none of these simple labels provides a satisfactory response. We are how we live, constantly in a state of flux. But it is essential to ask and be asked that question, one which I believe is at the heart both of the act of writing and of reading.
At Salon, author Azar Nafisi shares what Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland means to her, and how an imaginary world can help us question the one we think we know.