Kaisa_2012_3_photo by Veikko Somerpuro

Learning outcomes
After the course, students will have an understanding of the different ways in which mass media content in the United States and Europe shapes the public view of the Middle East, Islam and Muslims. They will be able to critically examine media images and representations, and connect these representations to existing power relations as well as to global and domestic politics. They will learn to critically evaluate potential political agendas behind the media content (including examples from the British and French colonialism, war on terror, wars in Afghanistan and Iraq). They will also learn about counter-hegemonic public spheres and alternative ways to engage with (and portray) the Middle East.

Contents
The course examines the portrayal of the Middle East, Muslims and Islam in the media in the United States and Europe. The course borrows its title from Edward Said’s book “Covering Islam: How the Media and the experts determine how we see the world” and expands on its findings. It familiarizes the student with the debates and scholarly criticism concerning representations of Muslims and the Middle East in the North American and European media landscapes. First, we will look at the different ways in which Islam, the Middle East (or the “Orient”), and Muslims have been historically portrayed in writing that accompanied colonial missions. Secondly, we will engage with the contemporary media representations and images of Muslims and the Middle East. We also analyze how these representations are connected to contemporary domestic politics and international relations. The following cases will be discussed: Representations that originate from the British and French colonial eras; media coverage related to the war on terror and its consequences; US-led wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; contemporary portrayal of Muslims in Europe. The aim of the course is to help students to critically assess contemporary news coverage and media representations as well as to see the historical (dis)continuities of these representations. It gives the students tools to question essentialist representations and think about alternative ways to engage with Islam and the Middle East.

Enrol
13.8.2019 at 09:00 - 2.9.2019 at 23:59

Timetable

Here is the course’s teaching schedule. Check the description for possible other schedules.

DateTimeLocation
Mon 2.9.2019
10:15 - 11:45
Thu 5.9.2019
12:15 - 13:45
Mon 9.9.2019
10:15 - 11:45
Thu 12.9.2019
12:15 - 13:45
Mon 16.9.2019
10:15 - 11:45
Thu 19.9.2019
12:15 - 13:45
Mon 23.9.2019
10:15 - 11:45
Thu 26.9.2019
12:15 - 13:45
Mon 30.9.2019
10:15 - 11:45
Thu 3.10.2019
12:15 - 13:45
Mon 7.10.2019
10:15 - 11:45
Thu 10.10.2019
12:15 - 13:45
Mon 14.10.2019
10:15 - 11:45
Thu 17.10.2019
12:15 - 13:45

Conduct of the course

Active participation in the lectures is a basic requirement. The students will need to prepare for the classes by reading the required readings before the class (available on Moodle). In addition to active participation in the class room, the students will write a short reflection paper.” At the end of the course, students write a longer reflection paper on a chosen topic related to the theme of the course.

Description

Liina Mustonen

Saara Toukolehto