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Journal: International Journal of Advanced Research (Vol.10, No. 12)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ;

Page : 980-992

Keywords : Representations Iraq Hollywood Muslims Orientalism;

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This study investigates portrayals of Iraq in the war film American Sniper (2014). The film encapsulates Hollywood’s anti-Muslim discourse post 9/11, which was particularly designed to influence public opinion and lay the groundwork for policies that encroach upon civil liberties. In an effort to legitimize the draconian, unprecedented measures the Bush Administration introduced in the tumultuous aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Hollywood sought to reinforce the perception of Muslims as primitive savages deserving of every cruelty inflicted on them, and create a narrative that conflates patriotism with unequivocal support for the government’s aggressive approach to national security. As a point of departure, this article draws on a litany of assertions Edward Said made regarding Orientalism, especially his contention that when the United States emerged as a dominant superpower in the aftermath of World War II, supplanting the once mighty and far-flung French and British empires, it inherited a vast repertory of derogatory stereotypes and essentialist tropes about the Islamic Orient. The film, American Sniper, abounds with familiar Orientalist imagery about Muslims, which aims to lock the public in a perpetual state of blind, patriotic hysteria and lend credence to an imperialist discursive tradition that has for long presented the Orient as an inferior, benighted savage that needs to be kept at bay at all costs.

Last modified: 2023-01-14 20:04:59