1st Edition

Middle Eastern Television Drama Politics, Aesthetics, Practices

Edited By Christa Salamandra, Nour Halabi Copyright 2023
    190 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This monograph explores and investigates key issues facing Middle Eastern societies, including religion and sectarianism, history and collective memory, urban space and socioeconomic difference, policing and securitization, and gender relations.

    In the Middle East, television drama creators serve as public intellectuals who, with uncanny prescience, tell the world something. As this volume demonstrates, fictional television provides a crucial space for social and political debate in much of the region. Writing from a range disciplines—anthropology, communication, folklore, gender studies, history, and law— contributors include seasoned academics who have dedicated their careers to researching Middle Eastern media and emerging scholars who build on earlier work and introduce fresh perspectives. Together, they provide an invaluable overview of Middle Eastern serial television and their political impact, drawing examples from Afghanistan, Egypt, Iran, Syria, and Turkey.

    Bringing together a diverse range of academic perspectives, this book will be of key interest to students and scholars in media and communication studies, Middle Eastern Studies, and popular culture studies.

    Introduction: Television Matters

    Nour Halabi, Leeds University, United Kingdom

    Christa Salamandra, City University of New York, United States

    1. ResurReaction: Competing Visions of Turkey’s (Proto) Ottoman Past in Magnificent Century and Resurrection Ertuğrul

    Josh Carney, American University of Beirut, Lebanon

    2. Red Death and Black Life: Media, Martyrdom and Shame

    Esha Momeni, University of California Los Angeles, United States

    3. A Massacre Foretold: National Excommunication and Al-Gama’a

    Walter Armbrust, University of Oxford, United Kingdom

    4. Social Media Activism in Egyptian Television Drama: Encoding the Counterrevolution Narrative

    Gianluca Parolin, Agha Khan University, United Kingdom

    5. Visualizing Inequality: The Spatial Politics of Revolution Depicted in Syrian Television Drama

    Nour Halabi, Leeds University, United Kingdom

    6. Past Continuous: The Chronopolitics of Representation in Syrian Television Drama

    Christa Salamandra, Lehman College, City University of New York, United States

    7 Gando and the Geopolitical Imagination on Iranian Television

    Mehdi Semati, Northern Illinois University, United States

    Nima Behroozi, University of Melbourne, Australia

    8. Afghan Television Dramas: Balancing Entertainment with the Realities of War

    Wazhmah Osman, Temple University, United States

    9. The Disguised Impact of the Distribution Processes in Turkish Television: Domestic Strategies for the Global Dizi

    Arzu Öztürkmen, Boğaziçi University, Turkey


    Christa Salamandra is Professor of Anthropology at Lehman College and the Graduate Center, CUNY. Her research explores urban, visual, and mediated culture. She is author of A New Old Damascus: Authenticity and Distinction in Urban Syria and co-editor of Syria from Reform to Revolt, Vol 2.

    Nour Halabi is an Interdisciplinary Fellow in the School of Social Science at the University of Aberdeen. Her research focuses on Arab and global media, social movements, and migration. She is author of Radical Hospitality: American Policy, Media, and Immigration.