Title

Representations of Muslim women in Hollywood movies: A Cultural Studies Analysis

Subject Area

Arabic and Islamic Studies

Abstract

It is well known the current climate has reinforced the negative representation of Muslims in the Western societies in general. This post 9/11 climate has been invested on by places like Hollywood which aims at creating a stereotypical image of a whole group of people in order to create a safe space for politics to take place. As I related to the cultural studies arguments and literature, those representations were made and reinforced through the use of certain strategies and techniques and for ready-made purposes. I also try to explain the logic behind the consistency of creating certain bodies and marginalizing some other things. Three Hollywood movies have been chosen in this paper to be seen through cultural Studies lens to investigate and analyze the representation of Muslim women bodies: (Hologram for the King, Alex and Eve, and Samira and Sam). It is very important to unveil the mechanism of those representations in Hollywood movies because we feel that it is deliberate and intentional (Shaheen, 2001) and the creation of certain images have serious consequences on the lives of Muslim women specifically and Muslims living in western societies in general. Therefore, this analysis aims at decoding and analyzing the racial and biased commitment of Hollywood to vilify the “others” and explaining the ways it tries to
reshape their identities.

Keywords

Culture, Arabic and Islamic Studies

Location

Room 212

Presentation Year

2017

Start Date

3-23-2017 2:55 PM

Embargo

1-11-2017

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Mar 23rd, 2:55 PM

Representations of Muslim women in Hollywood movies: A Cultural Studies Analysis

Room 212

It is well known the current climate has reinforced the negative representation of Muslims in the Western societies in general. This post 9/11 climate has been invested on by places like Hollywood which aims at creating a stereotypical image of a whole group of people in order to create a safe space for politics to take place. As I related to the cultural studies arguments and literature, those representations were made and reinforced through the use of certain strategies and techniques and for ready-made purposes. I also try to explain the logic behind the consistency of creating certain bodies and marginalizing some other things. Three Hollywood movies have been chosen in this paper to be seen through cultural Studies lens to investigate and analyze the representation of Muslim women bodies: (Hologram for the King, Alex and Eve, and Samira and Sam). It is very important to unveil the mechanism of those representations in Hollywood movies because we feel that it is deliberate and intentional (Shaheen, 2001) and the creation of certain images have serious consequences on the lives of Muslim women specifically and Muslims living in western societies in general. Therefore, this analysis aims at decoding and analyzing the racial and biased commitment of Hollywood to vilify the “others” and explaining the ways it tries to
reshape their identities.