Lost in Non-Translation: Misrepresentation of the Middle East [video]
Sally Gomaa, associate professor of English and communications and Chad Raymond, associate professor of political science and international relations at Salve Regina University will discuss how students in the USA perceive the Middle East. Although students often encounter the Middle East through novels translated into English, the novels are frequently presented by instructors and understood by students as stylized but accurate depictions of Arab societies as they currently exist. In reality, the extremely limited numbers of translated Arabic novels used in U.S. classrooms perpetuate historical stereotypes that are infused with violence, misogyny, and religious fanaticism. Although students may be interested in learning about the contemporary Middle East, the literature they encounter can lead to the reinforcement of existing prejudices rather than complex thought.