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The University Musical Society Presents: Bassem Youssef

Originally a five-minute show shot from his laundry room and posted on YouTube after protests in Tahrir Square unseated Egypt’s ruling elite, it became the most-watched program in the region, with 30 million viewers every week. Throughout its three seasons, the show remained controversial for its hilarious and bold criticism of ruling powers.

Accused of being “anti-Islam” and insulting the President, Youssef was arrested and interrogated before being released on bail. He was forced to terminate the show because of overwhelming political pressures and was subsequently awarded the prestigious International Press Freedom Award by the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), presented by Jon Stewart. In The Joke is Mightier than the Sword, Youssef shares his personal story and his thoughts on the political climate that led to the Arab Spring, its parallels to the current state of American politics, and how propaganda lays the foundation for dictatorial regimes. The multimedia presentation includes a talk, video, and audience Q&A.

Venue Details

  • Michigan Theater

    603 E. Liberty St., Ann Arbor Downtown Ann Arbor

    734-668-8480

    9 events 23 articles

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