The Basic Elements of the Religious Talk Show “Assharia Wal Hayat” on Al-Jazeera and its Impact on the Viewers: The Program of Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi

By Hatem EL Zein.

Published by The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society

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Article: Electronic $US5.00

The paper focuses on the major elements of a famous religious talk show in the Arab world and its impact on society. It researches the Arabic talk show “Assharia Wal Hayat” (in English: Islamic Law and Life), which has aired every Sunday on the Qatari channel “Al-Jazeera” since 1996. The basic elements of this talk show are the presenters, timing, the guest, and the viewers’ identities. The paper will adopt the Hypodermic Needle Theory in media, analysing how the views or the edicts of the guest can penetrate the head of the audience to “inject” them with beliefs and attitudes. Research about this topic is important for various reasons. Firstly, the talk show is on Al-Jazeera, which is famous and millions of Arabs watch this channel. Secondly, the dominant guest is a well-known Islamic figure, Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, who holds Muslim Brotherhood thoughts. Thirdly, the digital media enabled the spawning of many Arabic TV channels, some of which started airing religious talk shows, but “Islamic Law and Life” is still number one among them due to the fame of the channel and the guest. Fourthly, “Islamic Law and Life” is not only informative by providing Islamic edicts (Fatwa) on different daily issues, but it also works on shaping the personal identity of the viewers to achieve the objectives and goals of the channel and the guest.

Keywords: Al-Jazeera, Arab Spring, Fatwa, Hypodermic Needle Theory, Islamic Law and Life, Religious Media, Umma, Yusuf Al-Qaradawi

The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp.117-124. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.652MB).

Hatem EL Zein

Postgraduate Student, Centre of Journalism and Communication, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Central Queensland University, Chinchilla, Australia

PhD Candidate, Media and Communication Studies, Central Queensland University, Australia