Database for Animation Studies


Mediating a Disney-style Islam: The Emergence of Egyptian Islamic Animated Cartoons

As early as the 1930s, Egypt was the first Arab country to establish an animation production. While the majority of productions in the eight-decade history of the industry have been aimed at a national audience and conveyed through locally relevant messages, a growing number of films and series on Islamic topics targeting a transnational Muslim audience have emerged since the 1990s. This article examines the growth and characteristics of Egyptian Islamic animated cartoons and the Islamization of animation. It explores how the Egyptian state’s politics in the 1990s and its tightening affiliations with al-Azhar, the country’s highest religious authority, paved the way for such a production. Through a close study of the case of Qisas al-Qur’an (Stories from the Qur’an), the country’s most significant production to date in terms of budget, quality and distribution, this article provides an introduction to the characteristics of Egyptian Islamic animation.

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Animation: An Interdisciplinary Journal
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