Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on Reddit Tell A Friend Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites
Exclusive to OpEdNews:
OpEdNews Op Eds

Reel Bad Arabs - Confronting Stereotypes

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message Mac McKinney       (Page 1 of 4 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   No comments

Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; (more...) ; ; ; ; ; , Add Tags  (less...)
Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com

Author 2604
Become a Fan
  (32 fans)
- Advertisement -

Recently Amy Goodman interviewed Jack Shaheen about a topic that has helped fuel the American invasion and occupation of Iraq, as well as our largely carte blanche bias toward Israel's policies in the Middle East. And that topic is the stereotyping of Arab peoples in particular, and, I should add, as well as Moslem peoples in general, even though most Moslems are not Arabs. But in the superficial mass-American mind, quite often Arabs and Moslems are equated, and even Sikhs, who are an entirely different religion, are often thrown into this stereotypical mix. In fact, one Sikh was  murdered right after 9/11, mistaken for an Arab, and over a half-dozen men in total were slain as part of a frenzied backlash against those who happened to look Middle Eastern at the time.

In fact, if you Google "Destroy Islam", you get some 5,050,000 hits. Of course not all of them are screeds on attacking Islam, but a significant portion of them are, mostly coming from Fundamentalist and Evangelical Christian websites, which tend to equate Islam with Satan and who have invoked the Flag, the Cross and the Smart Bomb to wage war with.

- Advertisement -

- Advertisement -

Thank God that the Catholic Church, even with its ultra-conservative Pope Benedict XVI, has refused, despite some earlier criticism of Islam on the Pope's part, to pick up the rusty Crusader's sword that Pope Urban first invoked in 1095 at the Council of Clermont. That was the great and demagogic speech that launched the First Crusade leading to several centuries of brutal warfare in the Levant and beyond, the Fourth Crusade actually diverting itself north to Christian Constantinople, to sack the imperial city and usurp control of the Byzantine Empire. The Franks, Normans and Venetians could not resist the glitter of Byzantine gold and jewels.

So, against this violent historical background, deep racial prejudice and religious intolerance, comes Dr. Jack Shaheen with a rather remarkable movie, based on his 2001 book, that sheds a great deal of light on this odious stereotyping of Arab peoples in the American media and entertainment industry. Both the book and movie, which is also on DVD, are called Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People. 

Jack Shaheen, by the way is, to quote from Wikipedia's blurb about him:

Professor Emeritus of Mass Communication at Southern Illinois University. He was also a consultant on Middle East affairs for CBS News. 

He studies portrayals of Arabs and Islam in American media. Being a committed internationalist and humanist, Dr. Shaheen addresses stereotypical images of racial and ethnic groups. His presentations illustrate that stereotypes do not exist in a vacuum, that hurtful caricatures of Asians, blacks, Latinos and others, impact innocents. He explains why such portraits persist, and provides viable solutions to help shatter misperceptions. 

- Advertisement -

Among Dr. Shaheen's awards recognizing his "outstanding contribution towards a better understanding of our global community" are the University of Pennsylvania's Janet Lee Stevens Award, and the American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee's Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition for "his lifelong commitment to bring a better understanding towards peace for all mankind." (source) 

So on Oct 19, Amy Goodman did a piece on him on Democracy Now! at her firehouse studio, prefacing it with this statement: 

Where are the human images of Arabs and Arab Americans? That's the topic of a new film called "Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People." It's based on a book by the same name by acclaimed media critic Jack Shaheen. Both the book and the film explore the American cinematic landscape to reveal a stark pattern of Arab stereotyping and its disturbing similarity to anti-Semitic and other racist caricatures through history.

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3  |  4

 

- Advertisement -

View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com

I am a student of history, religion, exoteric and esoteric, the Humanities in general and a tempered advocate for the ultimate manifestation of peace, justice and the unity of humankind through self-realization and mutual respect, although I am not (more...)
 

Mac McKinney Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Follow Me on Twitter     Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

Please Donate

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Jesse Ventura Exposes the JFK Assassination Conspiracy Nationally

The Voice of the Wetlands Festival, Part 5: Brad Pitt and the Color Pink

Is Osama bin Laden Dead? Part 4: Deeper into the Confession Tape

JESSE VENTURA RAISES THE QUESTION: DID BP, TRANSOCEAN, HALLIBURTON KNOW THE DEEPWATER HORIZON WOULD BLOW?

Is Osama bin Laden Dead? Part 2: the First Tapes

A History of the FARC and Reviewing The FARC Revolutionist by Renate Vanegas