06 April 2018

Humour and Hot Water: Should Islam be a Target of Satire?

After noticing a dearth of Islam-related comedy, Waleed Wain decided to make low-budget satire skits mocking popular Salafi televangelists like Zakir Naik and Dawah Man, both of whom promote ideas that are anti-science and anti-democracy. He’s so far garnered effusive praise from Maajid Nawaz, the UK-based Muslim reformer, and has had his work noticed by the Clarion Project and the National Secular Society.

Islam is a subject few comedians in the West want to broach. While Western Christianity is seen as an easy target for ridicule, the other great monotheism rarely gets the same treatment. Many fear coming across as bigoted for poking fun at a faith associated primarily with non-whites, while others are perhaps wary of a credible threat of violence after the Danish cartoon affair and Charlie Hebdo.

With the global spread of austere, fundamentalist Wahhabism, however, the need for humour as a counterbalance to the sort of humourless fanaticism we’re seeing now has never been greater. At least one man in the UK is attempting to change all that. [Conatus News] Read more