Very sad to hear about the passing of Dr. Jack Shaheen. He’s the author of an important book called Reel Bad Arabs, about how Hollywood vilifies Muslims and Arabs in film and television. He’s an inspiration to so many of us that came from the Middle East and grew up in the United States. He clearly and accurately pointed out the racism in American media and how it effected the perception of a whole people.
Part of his biography from Aljazeera: Born in Pennsylvania in 1935 to Lebanese immigrants, Shaheen obtained a PhD at the University of Missouri and would later go on to receive two Fulbright teaching awards. He was a professor emeritus at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and a visiting scholar at New York University’s Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies. He worked extensively in the media industry, and was a former Middle East affairs consultant for CBS News. With the help of organisations such as the Arab American Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), he created scholarships for Arab-American students to study media.
Dr. Jack was also our advisor on American Arab and he’s written about my film Nice Bombs. He’s someone I consider an academic hero. Rest in peace Dr. Jack.
Our last email correspondence:
“Please stay in touch and keep the faith, my friend.
BEST wishes, Dr Jack”