FALL 2007 MIDDLE EAST FILM FESTIVAL


This fall, the Middle Eastern Studies Program continued its popular Middle East film festival with public screenings of important and academically provocative films about the Middle East. Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People dealt with how the degrading images of Arabs in Hol- lywood blockbusters has served to naturalize prejudicial attitudes toward Arabs and Arab culture. Divorce Iranian Style provided a subtle and fascinating look at how women use their strength, inge- nuity, and guile to confront biased laws in the Kafkaesque administrative system of Iranian divorce courts. The Yacoubian Building is an epic-scale drama showcasing aristocratic lifestyle, political corruption, homosexuality, and the growth of Muslim extremism in contemporary Egypt. Finally, Promises provided an alternative look at the Jewish-Palestinian conflict by following the lives of seven Jewish and Palestinian children for a period of three years and demonstrating how they lose their youthful innocence.