Anonymous, 5 Jul 2020
Research on Middle East, Islam and digital media
keyword: social media

New Book: The Routledge Companion to Social Media and Politics

The book compiles cutting-edge research across six continents to provide a comprehensive, global, up-to-date review of recent political uses of social media. Drawing together empirical analyses of the use of social media by political movements and in national and regional elections and referenda, The Routledge Companion to Social Media and Politics presents studies ranging from Anonymous and the Arab Spring to the Greek Aganaktismenoi, and from South Korean presidential elections to the Scottish independence referendum. The book is framed by a selection of keystone theoretical contributions, evaluating and updating existing frameworks for the social media age.

New Issue of the Arab Media and Society

The online journal Arab Media and Society has published its new issue (Issue 21, 2015) that focuses on pan-Arab TV channels, Egyptian media, and terrorism. Some articles include podcasts.

Book: Social Media in Iran: Politics and Society After 2009

The book tells the complex story of how and why the Iranian people—including women, homosexuals, dissidents, artists, and even state actors—use social media technology, and in doing so create a contentious environment wherein new identities and realities are constructed. Drawing together emerging and established scholars in communication, culture, and media studies, this volume considers the role of social media in Iranian society, particularly the time during and after the controversial 2009 presidential election, a watershed moment in the postrevolutionary history of Iran.

New Book: Media and Political Contestation in the Contemporary Arab World: A Decade of Change

This book addresses the roles of various media in the shaping and active contestation of particular conflicts and political agendas in the Arab world. Interdisciplinary contributions examine the sociopolitical dynamics generated in and through media, with perspectives emerging from media studies, anthropology, religious studies, and political science. This book explores both new media and older media forms and formats including the press, satellite television, Facebook, Web 2.0 technology, posters, and music videos. Topics range across the politics of popular culture, women scholars' religious fatwas, the Palestinian visual public sphere, Hezbollah's media policy, women's presence on Arab satellite television, and the uses of Facebook in the Tunisian revolution.

New Book: Reporting in the MENA Region: Cyber Engagement and Pan-Arab Social Media

The book explores the changing status and function of journalists and journalism given the new realities of reporting in the digital age. The authors draw on focus group discussions, interviews, and social media traffic surveys to examine how social and new media have been integrated into Arab and pan-Arab newsroom operations and harnessed to enhance engagement with an empowered audience. Efforts to engage with audiences in social space, the authors argue, are part of a broad and long-waged information war aimed at winning hearts and minds in the MENA region. Social platforms present excellent opportunities to engage with audiences, but the extent to which such opportunities can be realized are hamstrung by limits on free expression and online access—and vary significantly from country to country and from media channel to media channel.

New Book: Muhammad in the Digital Age

The book deals with topics such as the 2005 cartoon controversy in Denmark and the infamous 2012 movie trailer “Innocence of Muslims” that some believe sparked the attacks on the US consulate in Benghazi, as well as how the digitization of ancient texts have allowed the origins of Islam to be studied in new ways. Other essays examine how Muhammad’s wives have been represented in various online sources, including a web comic; the contrasting depictions of Muhammad as both a warrior and peacemaker; and how the widespread distribution of “the look” of Islamic terrorists has led to attacks on Sikhs, whose only point of resemblance to them may be a full beard. These findings illuminate the role of the Internet in forms of representation, advocacy, and engagement concerning Islam and Muslims in our world today.

New Book: Digital Culture and Religion in Asia

This book critically analyses the functions and interconnectedness between religion and digital media in a range of East Asian countries. It discusses both how religious organizations make use of new technologies, and also explores how new technologies are reshaping religion in novel and interesting ways. Based on extensive research, the book focuses in particular on Christianity in South Korea, Neo-Shintoism in Japan, Falun Gong in China and Islam in Southeast Asia. Offering a comparative perspective on a broad range of media practices including video gaming, virtual worship, social networking and online testimonials, the book also investigates the idea that use of technology in itself mirrors religious practices.

New Report: Documenting the Virtual ‘Caliphate’

Quilliam Foundation released its new report titled Documenting the Virtual ‘Caliphate’ written by Charlie Winter. The report is based upon an exhaustive 30 day survey of Islamic State propaganda conducted across the Islamic month of Shawwal (17 July 2015 – 15 August 2015). A unique methodology was used to compile an archive comprising of a total of 1146 separate propaganda “events” – discrete batches of media from videos and photo essays to audio statements and songs sung a cappella.

New Book: Headlines from the Holy Land: Reporting the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Based on new archive research and original interviews with leading correspondents and diplomats, the book explains why this fiercely contested region exerts such a pull over reporters: those who bring the story to the world. Despite decades of diplomacy, a just and lasting end to the conflict remains as difficult as ever to achieve. Inspired by the author's own experience as the BBC's correspondent in Gaza from 2002-2004, and subsequent research, this book draws on the insight of those who have spent years observing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Starting from a historical perspective, it identifies the challenges the conflict presents for contemporary journalism and diplomacy, and suggests new ways of approaching them.

New Book: Digital Passages: Migrant Youth 2.0: Diaspora, Gender and Youth Cultural Intersections

The book is a ground-breaking analysis of the ways that youth culture online interacts with issues of diaspora, gender, and belonging. Drawing on surveys, in-depth interviews, and ethnography, the author builds an interdisciplinary portrait of online youth culture and the spaces it opens up for migrant youth to negotiate power relations and to promote intercultural understanding.
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