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Home > Resources > A study of humour in the Arab world in the face of terror.

A study of humour in the Arab world in the face of terror.

Book Presentation

Wednesday 15 January 2020, by siawi3

Source: https://www.hurstpublishers.com/book/joking-about-jihad/

A study of humour in the Arab world in the face of terror.

[(Joking About Jihad
Comedy and Terror in the Arab World

by Gilbert Ramsay and Moutaz Alkheder

Hurst April

Paperback
April 2020 • £25
9781787383166 • 296pp)]

Satire and comedy are powerful tools in politics, both to convince and to ridicule. As this original and bleakly humorous book attests, global jihadism is no exception.

Joking About Jihad
Comedy and Terror in the Arab World
Gilbert Ramsay and Moutaz Alkheder

Satire and comedy are powerful tools in politics, both to convince and to ridicule. As this original and bleakly humorous book attests, global jihadism is no exception.

Description

Can laughter really be used to undermine the appeal of terrorist groups? And should it be? Is there any truth in the stereotypical notions of fanaticism as humourless, and of humour as the antithesis of fanaticism? What is the deeper significance of the jihadi’s status as an object of mockery in Arabic popular culture?

Joking About Jihad explores this thicket of problems sprouting from one of the most basic—and supposedly most innocent—of human behaviours, and looks at how it has been applied to one of the least obviously laughable phenomena in the world today. Ramsay and Alkheder draw on original interviews and hitherto unexamined texts, combining insights from fieldss diverse as politics, psychology, cultural studies, Islamic studies and humour research. Examining apparently spontaneous joking, professional comedy and even the jokes told by jihadis themselves, they show how Salafi jihad has been made laughable in the modern Arab world, and why it matters.
Author

Gilbert Ramsay is a lecturer at the University of St Andrews Centre for the Study of Terrorism and Political Violence, and author of Jihadi Culture on the World Wide Web.

Moutaz Alkheder is a PhD candidate at the Centre, working on anti-jihadist rhetoric in Arabic television comedy.

Review

‘A sharp and insightful reflection not only on the potential of humour in countering jihadi propaganda, but more generally on the impact of satire and derision in debunking oppressors’ lies in the Muslim world.’ — Jean-Pierre Filiu, Professor of Middle East Studies, Sciences Po, Paris School of International Affairs (PSIA)