Friday, April 4, 2008

Send me your stereotypes



AMMAN -- Jordan's Queen Rania has launched her own Internet channel on YouTube in a bid to encourage young people to help tackle stereotypes of Muslims and Arabs, her office said on Tuesday.

"In a world where it's so easy to connect to one another, we still remain very much disconnected. There's a whole world of wonder out there that we cannot appreciate with stereotypes," a statement quoted her as saying.

"I want people to know the real Arab world, to see it unedited, unscripted and unfiltered, to see the personal side of my region, to know the places and faces and rituals and culture that shape the part of the world I call home."

Rania, the wife of King Abdullah II, urged viewers to respond with their opinions of the Middle East "and to acknowledge stereotypes they've heard of Arabs and Muslims".

The queen said she would work "towards breaking down these preconceptions over the next few months" on the popular website.

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I have mixed feelings and thoughts on Queen Rania and her recent endeavors. I do not think she is the best person to represent Muslim or Arab women let alone the Muslim or Arab world. Nevertheless, her latest initiative is creative and holds a lot of potential.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey, Lena's "A Land Called Paradise" is one of her two favorites!

Anonymous said...

Astigfirullah, being the "Queen" of a Muslim country she should set an example and at least try to dress modestly.

SA said...

Jazaky Allahu khayran Huda for sharing this. Pretty cool to see someone like her taking advantage of the resources around to the maximum benefit. While over 90% are Muslims, she is also representing the minority which are Christians and Druze, and her main focus is about representing Arabs. So to "annonymous #2" - judging on her dress rather than her work is not the focus of the discussion.. and instead of making judgments in public, make du`aa' for her instead. I agree with Huda, yet I think that this particular step is pretty cool one considering now so many people utilize YouTube and other online resources to connect.

Zahid said...

I just don't think that she really represents Arab/Muslim women. I would have preferred atleast someone who would dress modestly, do hijab etc.

It is though very creative and innovative way to reach the hearts and minds of youtube users but I never understood why Islam always has to be on the defensive.

Affad Shaikh said...

because there is so many stereotypes that exist.

However, i dont see this as being defensive, its proactive.

Imagine the next time some one hears something that is a stereo type and they might have watched this, being enlightened they could ideally set people straight.

Remember the ABC video of the non-muslim girl that broke down in tears but stood up for Muslims, it was because she knew and was able to stand her ground because of that.

I dont think this is defensive, it has a bigger picture in mind.

Alia said...

Nice post Huda! I totally agree that although Queen Rania may not represent a Muslim women who wears hijab, I do think she represents a vast majority of Arab women. Many Arab women choose not to wear hijab and lets remember that many Arab women are not necessarily Muslim to begin with. Just go to the streets of Dubai, Amman, Cairo or an airplane leaving from Saudi to country X to be reminded that there are tons of Muslimah's that don't don the hijab.

Creative indeed, interested to see how it pans out!