Brown Album: Essays on Exile and Identity

Brown Album: Essays on Exile and Identity

*A Vintage Original*
From the much-acclaimed novelist and essayist, a beautifully rendered, poignant collection of personal essays, chronicling immigrant and Iranian-American life in our contemporary moment.


Novelist Porochista Khakpour's family moved to Los Angeles after fleeing the Iranian Revolution, giving up their successes only to be greeted by an alienating culture. Growing up as an immigrant in America means that one has to make one's way through a confusing tangle of conflicting cultures and expectations. And Porochista is pulled between the glitzy culture of Tehrangeles, an enclave of wealthy Iranians and Persians in LA, her own family's modest life and culture, and becoming an assimilated American. Porochista rebels—she bleaches her hair and flees to the East Coast, where she finds her community: other people writing and thinking at the fringes. But, 9/11 happens and with horror, Porochista watches from her apartment window as the towers fall. Extremism and fear of the Middle East rises in the aftermath and then again with the election of Donald Trump. Porochista is forced to finally grapple with what it means to be Middle-Eastern and Iranian, an immigrant, and a refugee in our country today.
Brown Album is a stirring collection of essays, at times humorous and at times profound, drawn from more than a decade of Porochista's work and with new material included. Altogether, it reveals the tolls that immigrant life in this country can take on a person and the joys that life can give.

Title:Brown Album: Essays on Exile and Identity
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780525564713
Format Type:

    Brown Album: Essays on Exile and Identity Reviews

  • Michael

    collects together what Khakpour considers to be the best of her writings on Iranian-American identity, immigration, and race, with almost all of the pieces available online (in some form), notably exc...

  • Fatemeh

    A series of memories, some specific to Khakpour, many familiar to “brown” American kids of all stripes. A great collection of essays that resonated deeply with me....

  • Kate

    "You are 19 years in America, you become an American on November 2001 and you realize you could have had a child in that time. You have no kids, no husband, no home you own, no roots. No real reason t...

  • T

    Not sure how to feel about this collection of essays. I’ve read Khakpour’s novels (meh) and memoir (in which an important issue — women being heard and taken seriously by medical professionals ...

  • Natalie (CuriousReader)

    First published on my blog: https://curiousreaderr.wordpress.com/...Brown Album collects Porochista Khakpour’s essays exploring identity and expression, growing up, creative writing and loving stori...

  • Shaelene (aGirlWithBookss)

    In Brown Album, Khakpour explores what it is to be an Iranian Muslim in America, and her feelings struggling with her identity. This essay collection will make you laugh & cry, and become completely a...

  • Anahita

    I loved this book more than I expected I would. Khakpour’s writer’s voice reels you in from the very beginning, and her personal anecdotes didn’t feel tired or repetitive like a lot of writing a...

  • Ilana

    ´When Iranians write you and say you are not Iranian enough for them, thank them, and when others say you are too Iranian for them, thank them too´.The Essays on Exile and Identity included in the B...

  • Alicia Bane

    This collection was fantastic. The way Khakpour writes of her experiences as an Iranian-American is both funny and poignant, with such honesty and depth. This is the first book of hers that I've read,...

  • Nelda Brangwin

    The highs of career successes and the lows of discrimination and emotional defeats are laid bare in this series of essays by an Iranian American living in a white America. She writes with humor about ...