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Is “Sex and the City 2” Racist?

Film 2010/05/28 15:32:37
Yes, Sex and the City portrays Middle Eastern culture poorly.
No, Sex and the City is just having frothy fun.
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“Sex and the City 2,” the second film in the franchise based on the hit HBO series, is facing charges of racism.

In the film, the character of Samantha, played by Kim Cattrall, is offered an all-expenses paid PR trip, for her and her three best friends, to Abu Dhabi. Once there, the outspoken, hypersexual Samantha refuses to respect the culture’s attitudes towards women, dressing in revealing outfits and behaving in an overtly sexual manner. The other characters crack wise about the misogynist attitudes of Middle Eastern men and make jokes about burqas and the niqab – a Muslim face veil.

Andrew O’Hehir of Salon.com claims that that the movie’s portrayal of the Muslim world is “dumb and offensive. The 'SATC2' coven has no problem with ‘the new Middle East’ when it’s all about private manservants (and) endlessly flowing fruity-tooty cocktails…The foursome develops a sudden concern with the oppression of Arab and Muslim women only after the pipeline of pornographic bling-juice is cut off…the germ of an interesting idea…is handled too clumsily to be either funny or dramatically effective.” And Claudia Puig in USA Today calls the film “an affront to Muslims.”

Michael Patrick King, the film’s writer/director, denies the charges and defends the film. “To me it’s not a political movie,” he told Sky News. “It’s an escapist comedy, but of course Samantha Jones in the Middle East puts a smile on my face only because she’s inappropriate wherever she goes. It has nothing to do with the culture of the Middle East she insults – she insults people in New York!”

Star Sarah Jessica Parker claims that the charges of racism are based on a misunderstanding of the film’s perspective. “Certainly Carrie is loving the experience of this rare opportunity to observe women of faith who are really loving the idea of tradition or, in fact, loving their faith and re-defining tradition for themselves,” she said. “I think all of us, and especially Carrie Bradshaw who is the narrator, comes back saying: “It’s really important to see the world through a different lens.”

Do these criticisms seem fair? Or does the attitude of Middle Eastern men deserve a little roasting by Carrie and Company?

Read More: http://www.salon.com/

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Top Opinion

  • Merna 2010/05/28 21:02:38 (edited)
    No, Sex and the City is just having frothy fun.
    Merna
    +11
    Pfffft when i clicked on this blog i thought it was something serious, by the way in Muslim countries they joke about western cultures all the time, why is it only racist when it comes from the west, and it's freedom of speech when from the east? Hypocrites.....

    Edit: I forgot to say that IMHO sex and the city is ALMOST as lame as twilight.

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  • Jee Jee 2011/09/07 14:05:10
    No, Sex and the City is just having frothy fun.
    Jee Jee
    +1
    Yes, Sex and the City 2 is irreverant and the ladies do not know much about Middle Eastern culture, but it is not racist. Gee, anyone standing up for the niqab or the burqa is questionable to me, and I am part Middle Eastern. Hundreds of years ago rich women used to wear burqas so they could hide themselves when traveling, no it has been used as a symbol of oppression. By the way, anyone who does not see this must be part of the gentlemen's club who likes to oppress women in the Middle East, and other countries. I believe in religious tolerance, but when a religion is so right wing it tells women they have to cover up their entire body, that is where I have a problem. I have the same problem with right wing Christianity in the US, and politicians like Bachman and Perry who make their insidious comments. When there is still so much real racism in the world, I am not sure how people can find it in a silly movie like Sex and the City. Some people look for things to be offended about, truly. Some people do not realize that in some Islamic countries like Iran there is very little tolerance for women who do not want to wear the veil, you have to there. So whereas Western commentators might be taken aback by the ladies comments about the veils, dumb to do it in public like t...
    Yes, Sex and the City 2 is irreverant and the ladies do not know much about Middle Eastern culture, but it is not racist. Gee, anyone standing up for the niqab or the burqa is questionable to me, and I am part Middle Eastern. Hundreds of years ago rich women used to wear burqas so they could hide themselves when traveling, no it has been used as a symbol of oppression. By the way, anyone who does not see this must be part of the gentlemen's club who likes to oppress women in the Middle East, and other countries. I believe in religious tolerance, but when a religion is so right wing it tells women they have to cover up their entire body, that is where I have a problem. I have the same problem with right wing Christianity in the US, and politicians like Bachman and Perry who make their insidious comments. When there is still so much real racism in the world, I am not sure how people can find it in a silly movie like Sex and the City. Some people look for things to be offended about, truly. Some people do not realize that in some Islamic countries like Iran there is very little tolerance for women who do not want to wear the veil, you have to there. So whereas Western commentators might be taken aback by the ladies comments about the veils, dumb to do it in public like they did, people in those countries allow no difference of opinion. Even some women in Egypt have noted how the veil has become so wide spread in the last fifteen years, whereas many women used to no wear it. That is all fine and good if you want to wear the veil, but trying to impose it on others is not such a good thing. Samantha is irreverent anyone and everywhere she goes, but that Dutch guy she went on the date with was worse. No one ever calls out his behavior in that movie, but he is a man, so gets away with more. Never mind that men in the Middle East Google sex more than any part of the world. Do not believe me, research it!
    (more)
  • Dr. Maybe 2011/02/11 08:18:47
    I think Sex and the City ...
    Dr. Maybe
    Yes, it's racist. Towards both Middle Eastern culture, and American tourists.
  • VICTORIA 2010/06/01 21:48:26
    I think Sex and the City ...
    VICTORIA
    Has it's audience, which doesn't include me.
    All of my shoes look like this-
    And my Okabashis for $11. are the best shoes I've ever owned.
    sex city audience include shoes okabashis 11 shoes ive sex city audience include shoes okabashis 11 shoes ive
  • Walt 2010/06/01 03:40:28
    I think Sex and the City ...
    Walt
    I've never been able to get into a mindset where I could enjoy the "Sex and the City" series. That said, I have to wonder why a group of people who are so generally Anti-American would think Americans should be concerned about American movies discriminating against them. Who cares what they think? I surely don't. Most of them danced in the streets in celebration of the 9/11 catastrophe and I think that says more than any words possibly could.
  • Mallah's Brain 2010/06/01 03:32:43
    I think Sex and the City ...
    Mallah's Brain
    JUSTIFIBLY roasts Arabs
  • Philadelphia Freedom 2010/05/31 22:49:29
    I think Sex and the City ...
    Philadelphia Freedom
    +1
    it's a movie get over it and who cares , and if you do care don't go to see it .
  • sweet and sour 2010/05/31 20:07:49
    No, Sex and the City is just having frothy fun.
    sweet and sour
    +4
    They're just women who think to much of themselves and try to act young by getting multiple face lifts sex city frothy fun women act young multiple lifts
  • *harizo... sweet a... 2010/05/31 20:27:23
    *harizon line*
    bahahahaha
  • mavericky 2010/05/31 19:53:25
    No, Sex and the City is just having frothy fun.
    mavericky
    +1
    It's just a movie. If someone finds it offensive, they should not pay the $12 to go see it.
  • Mallah'... mavericky 2010/06/01 03:33:24
    Mallah's Brain
    i saw it for $3
  • mavericky Mallah'... 2010/06/01 03:36:42
    mavericky
    Wow. Even our matinées are $9.
  • The Berserker 2010/05/31 15:53:45
    I think Sex and the City ...
    The Berserker
  • ♣♦Miss Cellophane♥♠ 2010/05/31 13:15:48
    I think Sex and the City ...
    ♣♦Miss Cellophane♥♠
    +2
    Is very overrated. No normal American woman would be that..... 'slutty'. I say they all get back in the kitchen and make me dinner.
  • Jee Jee ♣♦Miss ... 2011/09/07 14:15:16
    Jee Jee
    +3
    You are so lazy you cannot make your own dinner? Last time I check, there are plenty of male whores out there, so a woman having sex as much as a man bothers you. I know men who are pretty cooks than some women. The stone age mentality went out of style about twenty years ago.
  • Team ~ I like to piss peopl... 2010/05/31 10:10:29
    I think Sex and the City ...
    Team ~ I like to piss people off! ~
    is cool! I suprised myself by liking the first one and I can't wait to see the 2nd! I haven't seen it yet so how can I comment!
  • Mallah'... Team ~ ... 2010/06/01 03:33:52
    Mallah's Brain
    it's as good as the first.
  • Team ~ ... Mallah'... 2010/06/01 22:48:53
    Team ~ I like to piss people off! ~
    At least you have seen it. :C

    Im gonna go to the premier of 'Eclipse'. Can't wait to seen Jacob and Bella kiss! YAY!!!!!!!!!
  • PedoBear Team ~ ... 2010/06/02 17:46:04
    PedoBear
    +1
    oh god... another twigay fan... *sigh* now they've even infiltrated my one safe place - sodahead!
  • Team ~ ... PedoBear 2010/06/06 00:24:51
    Team ~ I like to piss people off! ~
    :(
    I wasn't talking to you at all. So shut up. Luv you Twilight!!!! Also gay is a stupid insult.
  • PedoBear Team ~ ... 2010/06/06 07:42:12
    PedoBear
    +1
    Oh god, it isn't mean like that! I just wish that Edward/Robert would come out of the closet! We'll all accept him if he'd just tell everyone! :P And I will never shut up, because I'm annoying like that.
  • Team ~ ... PedoBear 2010/06/07 06:14:47
    Team ~ I like to piss people off! ~
    Yes you are! haha. Ok then. Now that you say that then i suppose it sounds less harsh. Yea i don't really care about Robert Pattison. But i do care for Jacob Black/ Taylor Lautner.
  • PedoBear Team ~ ... 2010/06/07 14:59:46 (edited)
    PedoBear
    Lol. His body is great, but his eyes and voice kind of put me off... So I spend my time dreaming of Jason Statham!
    lol body eyes voice spend dreaming jason statham
  • Team ~ ... PedoBear 2010/06/08 10:17:32
    Team ~ I like to piss people off! ~
    +1
    Yea i guess Jason is alright. But eww hairy chest!
  • PedoBear Team ~ ... 2010/06/08 14:22:45
    PedoBear
    Nope. Not on him.
  • Team ~ ... PedoBear 2010/06/09 10:50:22
    Team ~ I like to piss people off! ~
    To me... yeah.
  • Lord Nils 2010/05/31 06:43:24
    I think Sex and the City ...
    Lord Nils
    +1
    Is a waste of time and space.
    But if the islamists are offended, then just for that I will give it three stars!
  • I am the FIRST BLACK PRESIDENT 2010/05/31 03:47:41
  • Mallah'... I am th... 2010/06/01 03:34:05
    Mallah's Brain
    word
  • Fitted 2010/05/31 01:54:42
    I think Sex and the City ...
    Fitted
    +1
    the movie rocks and if someone has a problem wit it buzz off dont watch it all movies are not for everyone so if dont like it who cares no one is forcing u to watch it!
  • Phletch 2010/05/31 01:33:20
  • Pele Emerging 2010/05/30 21:02:21
    I think Sex and the City ...
    Pele Emerging
    ...can do whatever they want. No one is forced to spend 10 to 15 bucks on a movie. No one has to watch it. From what little I know of Islam, the word sex alone would preclude attendance by those who practice it. Considering Sharia law, roasting is the least of what men from the Middle East deserve. If they wish to continue to whine, here's something to go with it.
    attendance practice sharia law roasting middle east deserve continue whine
  • JDLogan 2010/05/30 20:42:30
    I think Sex and the City ...
    JDLogan
    +2
    ... wasn't a very good television show, and I have no idea how it spawned two motion pictures, perhaps the American people should be offended at the notion that this is the entertainment we deserve.

    Of course, if we won't demand better ...
  • Pieter ... JDLogan 2010/05/30 22:41:01
    Pieter Joubert
    +1
    Or maybe taste in entertainment differs and such a lot of people liked the series that the producers saw opportunity to cash in. Just a thought.
  • JDLogan Pieter ... 2010/05/30 23:56:44
    JDLogan
    +1
    That is why I chose the answer that said "I think"; I know people have different tastes, and that is all well and good, but it doesn't mean I understand their thought process.
  • Randy 2010/05/30 17:39:14
    No, Sex and the City is just having frothy fun.
    Randy
    They dish it out but they can't take it
  • sue 2010/05/30 07:37:50
    I think Sex and the City ...
    sue
    +2
    I didn't see the movie, only read this article. I can see that just the idea of the Samantha character in a conservative culture us supposed to be funny. And, I can see talking about the niqab as an imposition of a misogynistic culture -- after all, it pre-dates Islam and is a Bedouin custom which no longer makes sense. (It makes all kinds of sense to cover your face when you live in the desert, because sand blows all the time.)

    However, I think places like Dubai pose some interesting questions. Of course it looks like a bright modern city in the middle of what is perceived to be a backward region. When you look closer, however, you see not only laws that are repressive for women and impede normal business and discourse, but also a vertiable slave trade. Many of those "manservants" mentioned in the article have had their passports taken away and are working under very different conditions from the ones they were promised when the left home. The construction workers on the fabulous buildings fare even worse, since they not only cannot leave and are paid badly, but also live in un-airconditioned barracks. I haven't even touched on what can be expected by a female household servant in the same situation. More than the outward repression of women, and forced conservatism, I think the concern in Dubai is human trafficking. If they wanted to raise an issue, I think that should be it more than the dress code.
  • Pieter ... sue 2010/05/30 22:45:07
    Pieter Joubert
    If you pay a visit to your Las Vegas and other desert casino cities, the same experience applies. Lots of bright lights and modern buildings, Many foreign construction workers treated the same way.
  • sue Pieter ... 2010/05/31 06:42:43
    sue
    +2
    That's true, but it is illegal in the US. Not in Dubai.
  • VICTORIA sue 2010/06/01 21:44:30
    VICTORIA
    +2
    Bravo Sue!

    bravo sue
  • sue VICTORIA 2010/06/02 16:22:29
    sue
    +1
    Thanks, Victoria. That means a lot coming from you.

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