Mahmoud Abbas, the President of the Palestinian Authority, accused the paper of a “grave mistake” over publication of a cartoon which was innocuous by comparison with Charlie Hebdo’s controversial portrayal of the Prophet Mohammed but which some readers thought depicted the Prophet. The cartoonist, Muhammed Sabaaneh, told the official Palestinian news agency Wafa that his drawing, of a robed figure standing on a globe and dispersing seeds of light from a heart-shaped purse, was not of the Prophet Mohammed. “It was a symbolic figure for Islam and the Muslim’s role in spreading light and love for all humanity,” he said.
What has the media community learned from the Charlie Hebdo cartoons? EJN Director Aidan White writes the three immediate lessons: That free expression is more complicated than we think, that context and perspective are essential for reporting, and journalism can act to limit hate speech.
The piece was powerful, making the point that “men who are eventually arrested for violent acts often began with attacks against their girlfriends and wives.” But for some readers, dismay at the illustration which followed the old and deeply problematic trope of showing the innocent victim as a woman with a lily-white face and the perpetrator as a man with a black face and body, overwhelmed their reaction to the article itself. (via The New York Times)