In the spring 2019 semester, students in Levi Thompson’s course “Representing Islam” created a podcast episode for the program The East Is A Podcast, produced by Sina Rahmani. During the course, students considered how Islam has been represented, by Muslims and non-Muslims alike, over the centuries. This project is one of many different final projects students completed, all of which dealt with the course topic in some way.
The episode the students produced covers the operations of the Franklin Book Program, an American book-publishing and translation initiative that operated in the Middle East from 1953 to 1979. In it, the students examine the program as an instance of American soft power within the context of Cold War cultural imperialism and give listeners a number of bibliographical notes for further investigation.
ARAB 3340 Representing Islam
Explores the cultural politics of representations of the Arab and Islamic worlds both with an emphasis on literary representations of the Islamic world in travel narratives and novels from both the West and the Arab world. Examines historical, anthropological, and visual texts to consider how Islam has been narrated in colonial European imaginings about the Islamic world as well as contemporary representations.