Hamad bin Khalifa University’s (HBKU) Translation and Interpreting Institute (TII) hosted the internationally acclaimed scholar and media critic, Dr Jack Shaheen, on 7 October as part of its Distinguished Public Talks series.
A committed internationalist and a devoted humanist, Dr Shaheen has given over a thousand lectures and written hundreds of essays in publications such as Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post. His lectures and writings illustrate that racial and ethnic stereotypes injure innocent people. He defines crude caricatures, explains why they persist, and suggests strategies to undo misconceptions.
Dr Shaheen’s lecture, entitled ‘Images of Arabs in American Popular Culture; Problems and Prospects’, is derived from his latest book, ‘A is for Arab: Archiving Stereotypes in U.S. Popular Culture’, which features photographs of objects and materials from his archives which delves deeply into popular American culture representations of Arabs and Muslims from the early 20th century to present day. The lecture aims at stimulating discussion about the impact of stereotypes on both individual perceptions and national policy.
The event also featured a screening of the award-winning documentary, ‘Reel Bad Arabs’, which addresses the orientalizing aspect of American cinematic history that has remained unchallenged in cinema studies.
Featuring Dr Shaheen, the documentary highlights the discourse of categorizing and degrading images of Arabs. Also, it challenges viewers to recognize the urgent need for counter-narratives, for more accurate representation of Arabs and the reality of Arab history and culture.
To read the full article on TII's website, please click here