Book Description

From Publishers Weekly In this meticulously researched book, Shaheen (Reel Bad Arabs) spotlights anti?Muslim and Arab stereotypes and probes the intersections of popular culture and foreign policy. The author investigates the close ties between Hollywood studios and Washington and recounts how, historically, the strategic stereotyping of populations has been used to garner popular support for governmental policies, citing the career of Leni Riefenstahl and speeches by Lenin and Goebbels to illustrate film's long history as a propaganda vehicle. In an index of more than 100 post-9/11 films, the book depicts and debunks the most prevalent stereotypes of reel Arabs?exotic camel-riding nomad, oppressed maiden, corrupt sheikh, terrorist. Dehumanizing portrayals of Arabs have real consequences, according to Shaheen; he draws correlations between the media's depiction of Arabs and the massive support for the invasion of Iraq, the wanton killing of Iraqi civilians and the escalating number of hate crimes against Arabs (or people who look like Arabs) in the United States. Unfortunately, after his superbly readable historical survey, Shaheen's list of solutions?entertainment summits and sample pro-Arab film treatments?seem disappointingly prosaic. Still this book's scope and its impassioned delivery make for an insightful and rewarding read. Copyright ? Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. Read more Review 'Jack Shaheen is a one-man anti-defamation league.''Dr. Jack Shaheen does it again. Guilty is a fascinating social study on the relationship between racism and cinema, and ultimately, how popular entertainment has the power to propagate damaging images of misunderstood cultures or destroy them.'In this meticulously researched book, Shaheen (Reel Bad Arabs) spotlights anti???Muslim and Arab stereotypes and probes the intersections of popular culture and foreign policy. The author investigates the close ties between Hollywood studios and Washington and recounts how, historically, the strategic stereotyping of populations has been used to garner popular support for governmental policies, citing the career of Leni Riefenstahl and speeches by Lenin and Goebbels to illustrate film's long history as a propaganda vehicle. In an index of more than 100 post-9/11 films, the book depicts and debunks the most prevalent stereotypes of 'reel Arabs'???'exotic camel-riding nomad,' oppressed maiden, corrupt sheikh, terrorist. Dehumanizing portrayals of Arabs have real consequences, according to Shaheen; he draws correlations between the media's depiction of Arabs and the massive support for the invasion of Iraq, the 'wanton' killing of Iraqi civilians and the escalating number of hate crimes against Arabs (or people who look like Arabs) in the United States...superbly readable historical survey...this book's scope and its impassioned delivery make for an insightful and rewarding read. -- PW 3/31/08 'Publishers Weekly March 31 2008' Read more See all Editorial Reviews

Comments