This article presents the ways in which Muslims and Arabs are represented and represent themselves in video games. First, it analyses how various genres of European and American video games have constructed the Arab or Muslim Other. Within these games, it demonstrates how the diverse ethnic and religious identities of the Islamic world have been flattened out and reconstructed into a series of social typologies operating within a broader framework of terrorism and hostility. It then contrasts these broader trends in western digital representation with selected video games produced in the Arab world, whose authors have knowingly subverted and refashioned these stereotypes in two unique and quite different fashions. In conclusion, it considers the significance of western attempts to transcend simplified patterns of representation that have dominated the video game industry by offering what are known as ‘serious’ games.
Published as Sisler, Vit. Digital Arabs: Representation in Video Games. European Journal of Cultural Studies. Vol. 11, No. 2, SAGE Publications, 2008, pp. 203-220. ISSN: 1367-5494. Read the whole article on Digital Islam: http://www.digitalislam.eu/article.do?articleId=1704