Framing political Islam in Popular Egyptian Cinema

Ilhem Allagui, Abeer Najjar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Political Islam has been at the forefront of political discussions in and of the Middle East and has often been associated with violence and 'terrorism'. Much has been written on political Islam, but there has been little work on how Arab audiences respond to and view political Islam and the groups seen to be acting under this generic framework, including al-Qa'eda. In the absence of serious audience research that would give us a better idea about attitudes, this article examines how Arab popular culture frames active Islamist groups; in particular we focus on Egyptian films that help shape Arab audiences' perspectives of political Islam. The article analyzes how political Islam is discussed in these films and by film producers, directors and media owners, and how Islamist groups are often framed as the 'other'.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203-224
Number of pages22
JournalMiddle East Journal of Culture and Communication
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes



  • Arab audiences
  • Egyptian cinema
  • framing
  • political economy
  • political Islam
  • terrorism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Communication
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

Cite this