Muslim and Arab stereotypes are nothing new in American media. From Ali Baba to Aladdin, negative images have persisted in children’s stories. Then came 9/11 and Hollywood’s need for an all-purpose post-Cold War villain––and the stage was set for the universalized charicature of the terrorist. Regrettably, this year’s most celebrated television drama series, Homeland, is fueled largely by such xenophobic ideology, which it serves up with troubling representations of sexuality and race. And yes, Homeland is our beloved President’s favorite show. A wonderfully thorough discussion of these issues appears in the article “Homeland, Obama’s Show” appearing this week in Aljazeera.com.
For readers unaware of the program’s premise, Homeland is an updated Manchurian Candidate narrative about a brainwashed former Marine who becomes a congressman. As discussed in the Aljazeera.com article by Joseph Massad, “The racist representation of Arabs is so exponential, even for American television (and this Continue reading ““Homeland’s” Muslim problem”