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Tackling Saudi’s taboos

Tackling Saudi’s taboos

A new television program in the kingdom vividly portrays the problems faced by Saudi women, hoping to bring them out in the open, reports Arab News.

April 20, 2009 10:06 by

According to a survey carried out by Ipsos-Stat, the program has been rated as the best program on television since January.

However, it has had its share of attacks from critics and the public as well. Drama critic Mamdooh Al-Mehainy encourages programs that bring social problems into the open, but he thinks the way such topics are addressed to viewers particularly in Asakinat fe Qolubena is one dimensional.

Talking specifically about the Eqab episode, he said it conveyed the wrong message to the viewer.

“Instead of putting emphasis on the new e-crimes law that specifies a range of offenses and penalties, including fines and imprisonment for computer hacking or harassment, the episode shows that men could kidnap and rape girls they meet online without any control,” he said. He added that the program also gives the impression that women who use the internet invite scandal, implying that women should not use the internet.

“I believe the episode has frightened people instead of educating them,” he said.

He added that Saudis are emotional and such topics probably would make them reject technology or prevent their women from using internet.

“It freaked me out,” said Maha Sa’ad, a mother of four teenage girls. “Honestly, I couldn’t sleep that night because I was thinking if these girls were my daughters.”

She hopes this could be a wakeup call for the girls who believe in relationships before marriage.

Likewise, Abdullah Al-Hamrani, a father in his late 40s, thinks that such dramas distort the image of Saudi society especially since millions of viewers around the Middle East watch the program.

“Regardless whether this incident has ever occurred in our society or not, don’t we have other bright stories to tell our Islamic society? These incidents are not happening every day,” he said.

First seen on Arab News.

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