It’s Barbie’s World

This post was written by Farah Banihali and originally appeared at AltMuslimah and Nuseiba.Last month Melbourne was host to “Forever Barbie” – an exhibition which “celebrates 50 years of a pop culture icon.” I’ve had my fair share of Barbie dolls when I was younger, but an exhibition? Since when did Barbie become an appropriate "cultural" artifact to celebrate?The critiques against Barbie are well known: she is a commodity that has come to define femininity and symbolize and perpetuate Weste … [Read more...]

Marwa El Sherbini Did Not Die For Her Hijab, So Please Stop Saying That She Did

Marwa El Sherbini is in the ground away from those who love her most.She did not want to die, she did not choose to die.She was murdered.In Germany the Muslim community is ethnically homogeneous, with the vast majority being of Turkish ethnicity. Even without her headscarf, her coloring and ethnicity means that Marwa would have still looked like an 'Auslander' and a Muslim one at that.Yet, all over the media she is dubbed as the Headscarf Martyr or the Hijab Martyr, meaning that the … [Read more...]

Tina Brown and Hillary Clinton’s Burqa

This was written by Allison McCarthy and originally appeared at GlobalComment.Tina Brown’s ploys for self-promotion are numerous, but her latest piece, along with a follow-up interview on CNN, takes the cake. Brown, former editor for noted U.S. magazines such as Vanity Fair, The New Yorker and Talk, has always maintained some problematic notions of feminist politics in her writing. She is also an adamant Hillary Clinton supporter, prepared to defend her candidate’s political representation at a … [Read more...]

Sensationalist Film Exploits Important Human Rights Issue in Iran

This was written by Elise Auerbach and originally published on Human Rights Now, the Amnesty International USA blog.Ordinarily, human rights activists would be pleased when the rare major motion picture shining a light on human rights violations comes along. In fact, aside from documentaries, it is very unusual to see issues that Amnesty International has worked on appear on film. However, sometimes a film can so distort an important human rights issue, that it may do more harm than good to … [Read more...]

Let the Funky Arabs Turn you On!

Sexy Girls. Arab Beauty that'll rock your world. Sea, sex and sun. Let the funky Arabs turn you on! The new "Funky Arabs" single by Jad Choueiri, the Lebanese singer known for crooning love ballads, has had over 150,000 views on YouTube in one month.Choueiri spends four and a half minutes singing about how Arabs are not the evil figures typically portrayed in Western media. "We're not what you see on CNN and the BBC. […] Ain't no bombers, we've got the guts," starts off the track. So far, so … [Read more...]

PETA Fails at Talking about Humans, Yet Again

Last week, Canadian Governor-General* Michaëlle Jean caused a huge storm in the media by eating a piece of seal heart while on a visit to an Inuit community in Nunavut, northern Canada.  In the context of increasing international (and domestic) outrage against the seal hunt in Canada, Jean had this to say about her act (all quotes from this article): "These are ancient practices that are part of a way of life," Jean said, framing her gutsy gesture as an act of solidarity with the Inuit. "If you c … [Read more...]

Blast from the Past: Dissecting Alison Moyet’s “Love Resurrection”

As we all know, pop culture can't get enough of the mysterious 'Orient' and its ubiquitous exotic women. The '80s New Romanticism movement is a case in point. Known for its exaggerated and often outrageous attitudes to fashion and music, the movement inspired pop musicians to take on faraway locations to shoot their videos: Duran Duran's "Hungry like the wolf" (in Sri Lanka) and "Rio" (in Antigua) are some fine examples. Following in their footsteps is Alison Moyet's desert nomad fantasy, … [Read more...]


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