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Reel Bad Arabs

How Hollywood Vilifies a People

Published by Olive Branch Press
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book

A groundbreaking book that dissects a slanderous history dating from cinema’s earliest days to contemporary Hollywood blockbusters that feature machine-gun wielding and bomb-blowing "evil" Arabs Award-winning film authority Jack G. Shaheen, noting that only Native Americans have been more relentlessly smeared on the silver screen, painstakingly makes his case that "Arab" has remained Hollywood’s shameless shorthand for "bad guy," long after the movie industry has shifted its portrayal of other minority groups. In this comprehensive study of over one thousand films, arranged alphabetically in such chapters as "Villains," "Sheikhs," "Cameos," and "Cliffhangers," Shaheen documents the tendency to portray Muslim Arabs as Public Enemy #1—brutal, heartless, uncivilized Others bent on terrorizing civilized Westerners. Shaheen examines how and why such a stereotype has grown and spread in the film industry and what may be done to change Hollywood’s defamation of Arabs.

About The Author

Jack G. Shaheen, a former CBS News consultant on Middle East affairs, is the world’s foremost authority on media images of Arabs and Muslims. He is the author of Guilty: Hollywood’s Verdict on Arabs after 9/11, Arab and Muslim Stereotyping in American Popular Culture, Nuclear War Films, and the award-winning TV Arab.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Olive Branch Press (December 31, 2012)
  • Length: 672 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781623710064

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Raves and Reviews

"Jack Shaheen continues to be a piercing laser of fairness and sanity in pointing out Hollywood's ongoing egregious smearing of Arabs. Rippling with smart insights, his book should be read by everyone who agrees that knowledge is society's greatest tool in battling all kinds of stereotypes."

– Howard Rosenberg, Los Angeles Times TV Critic

"Shaheen has written a meticulous, passionate, and very articulate description of the persistent and prolonged vilification of Arab peoples in mainstream Western movies" Although the work is aimed at a college-level audience, the clear writing and lack of jargon make it accessible to a much wider readership. Highly recommended..."

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