April 8, 2009

An MTV for Muslims Shuns the Dancers, Not the Controversy

A new music video television channel in Egypt aims to strengthen Islamic values and culture among Arab youth, reports the Christian Science Monitor.

4Shbab TV calls itself “Islam’s own MTV,” and avoids the racy dancing of mainstream music videos in favor of religious and family-friendly themes.

The station has been criticized for its lack of women in general, both in music videos or on game shows like “Who wants to be an Islamic pop star?”

4Shbab founder Ahmed Abu Haiba told the Monitor that women would be allowed on the network only gradually, due to their “bad reputation” as provocative dancers.

Despite this, Abu Haiba said the station has been threatened by Islamists who think the whole idea is sinful and forbidden.

–Julia Hengst/Newsdesk.org

“‘Islamic MTV’ takes on brash world of Arab pop videos”
Christian Science Monitor, March 17, 2009

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