Anonymous, 11 Dec 2018
Research on Middle East, Islam and digital media
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New Book: The Oxford Handbook of European Islam

The book presents a comprehensive approach to the multiple and changing ways Islam has been studied across European countries. Parts one to three address the state of knowledge of Islam and Muslims within a selection of European countries, while presenting a critical view of the most up-to-date data specific to each country. These chapters analyse the immigration cycles and policies related to the presence of Muslims, tackling issues such as discrimination, post-colonial identity, adaptation, and assimilation. The thematic chapters, in parts four and five, examine secularism, radicalization, Shari'a, Hijab, and Islamophobia with the goal of synthesizing different national discussion into a more comparative theoretical framework.

New Book: New Voices in Arab Cinema

The book focuses on contemporary filmmaking since the 1980s, but also considers the longer history of Arab cinema. Taking into consideration film from the Middle East and North Africa and giving a special nod to films produced since the Arab Spring and the Syrian crisis, Roy Armes explores themes such as modes of production, national cinemas, the role of the state and private industry on film, international developments in film, key filmmakers, and the validity of current notions like globalization, migration and immigration, and exile. This landmark book offers both a coherent, historical overview and an in-depth critical analysis of Arab filmmaking.

New Book: New Media and Religious Transformations in Africa

The book casts a critical look at Africa's rapidly evolving religious media scene. Following political liberalization, media deregulation, and the proliferation of new media technologies, many African religious leaders and activists have appropriated such media to strengthen and expand their communities and gain public recognition. Media have also been used to marginalize and restrict the activities of other groups, which has sometimes led to tension, conflict, and even violence. Showing how media are rarely neutral vehicles of expression, the contributors to this multidisciplinary volume analyze the mutual imbrications of media and religion during times of rapid technological and social change in various places throughout Africa.

Book: Online Arab Spring: Social Media and Fundamental Change

The book asks why the penetration rate for social media differs in different countries: are psychological and social factors at play? Each chapter considers national identity, the legitimacy crisis, social capital, information and media literacy, and socialization. Religious attitudes are introduced as a key factor in social media, with Arabic countries in the Middle East and North Africa being characterized by Islamic trends. The insight gained will be helpful for analysing online social media effects internationally, and predicting future movements in a social context.

Book: Paradoxes of Liberal Democracy: Islam, Western Europe, and the Danish Cartoon Crisis

The book shows how the majority of ordinary Danish citizens provided a solid wall of support for the rights of their country’s growing Muslim minority, drawing a sharp distinction between Muslim immigrants and Islamic fundamentalists and supporting the civil rights of Muslim immigrants as fully as those of fellow Danes—for example, Christian fundamentalists. Building on randomized experiments conducted as part of large, nationally representative opinion surveys, Paradoxes of Liberal Democracy also demonstrates how the moral covenant underpinning the welfare state simultaneously promotes equal treatment for some Muslim immigrants and opens the door to discrimination against others.

Book: Feminism and Religion in the 21st Century: Technology, Dialogue, and Expanding Borders

This anthology of brand new essays will explore the new directions of conversations occurring in relation to feminism and religion, as well as the technological modes being utilized to continue dialogue, expand borders, and create new frontiers in feminism. It is a cross generational project bringing together the voices of foremothers with those of the twenty-first century generation of feminist scholars to discuss the changing direction of feminism and religion, new methods of dialogue, and the benefits for society overall.

Book: Arab TV-Audiences: Negotiating Religion and Identity

The empirical based case studies in this interdisciplinary volume explore audience-media relations with a focus on religious identity in different countries such as Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Great Britain, Germany, Denmark, and the United States. Today the relations between Arab audiences and Arab media are characterised by pluralism and fragmentation. More than a thousand Arab satellite TV channels alongside other new media platforms are offering all kinds of programming. Religion has also found a vital place as a topic in mainstream media or in one of the approximately 135 religious satellite channels that broadcast guidance and entertainment with an Islamic frame of reference. How do Arab audiences make use of mediated religion in negotiations of identity and belonging?

Book: Gender, Women and the Arab Spring

This book provides a unique investigation into the gender dynamics of the Arab Spring as it unfolded in North Africa. It covers issues such as gender legislation in the post-revolution period, sexual harassment, gender activism, politics and the female body, women and Islamist movements, state feminism, women and political economy, and women’s rights in the context of political transitions. Chapters on Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya and Egypt are written by specialist and activists from those countries.

New Book: Bangladesh Cinema and National Identity: In Search of the Modern?

This book investigates the roles of a non-Western "national" film industry in Asia in constructing nationhood and identity within colonial and postcolonial predicaments. Drawing on the idea of cinema as public sphere and the postcolonial notion of formation of the "Bangladesh" nation, interactions between cinema and middle-class Bengali Muslims in different social and political matrices are analyzed. The author explores how the conflict among different social groups turned Bangladesh cinema into a site of contesting identities. In particular, he illustrates the connections between film production and reception in Bangladesh and a variety of nationalist constructions of Bengali Muslim identity.

New Book: Digital Technologies and the Evolving African Newsroom: Towards an African Digital Journalism Epistemology

The book interrogates the changing ecology of news-making in Africa in the context of rapid technological changes in newsrooms as well as in the wider social context of news production. It brings together six contributions drawn from five countries: Egypt, Mozambique, South Africa, Nigeria and Zimbabwe, to explore practices, challenges and professional normative dilemmas emerging with the adoption and appropriation of new technologies. While the studies point to dimensions of localised new technology appropriations as defined by the complex socio-political structures in which African journalists operate, they are not rigidly confined to Africa. They are expressly in dialogue with theoretical observations largely emerging from Western scholarship.
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