TV Dramas Censored In Egypt

In this Nov. 21, 2017 file photo, Egyptian actress Nabila Ebeid smiles on the red carpet during the opening of the 39th Cairo International Film Festival in Egypt. Egyptian police raided a tiny alternative film venue in Cairo the week prior to prevent the screening of “The Nile Hilton Incident.” The movie highlights Egyptian authorities’ obsession with censorship.
In this Nov. 21, 2017 file photo, Egyptian actress Nabila Ebeid smiles on the red carpet during the opening of the 39th Cairo International Film Festival in Egypt. Egyptian police raided a tiny alternative film venue in Cairo the week prior to prevent the screening of "The Nile Hilton Incident." The movie highlights Egyptian authorities' obsession with censorship. Nariman El-Mofty / AP Photo
In this Nov. 21, 2017 file photo, Egyptian actress Nabila Ebeid smiles on the red carpet during the opening of the 39th Cairo International Film Festival in Egypt. Egyptian police raided a tiny alternative film venue in Cairo the week prior to prevent the screening of “The Nile Hilton Incident.” The movie highlights Egyptian authorities’ obsession with censorship.
In this Nov. 21, 2017 file photo, Egyptian actress Nabila Ebeid smiles on the red carpet during the opening of the 39th Cairo International Film Festival in Egypt. Egyptian police raided a tiny alternative film venue in Cairo the week prior to prevent the screening of "The Nile Hilton Incident." The movie highlights Egyptian authorities' obsession with censorship. Nariman El-Mofty / AP Photo

TV Dramas Censored In Egypt

Every evening of Ramadan following the iftar in Egypt, popular TV dramas called ‘musalsalat’ are broadcast across the country and the wider Arab world, attracting viewership rates that would make producers of Game of Thrones and Chernobyl green with envy. These shows have entertained Egyptians while historically also serving as spaces for diverse cultural and political commentary. Since Abdel Fattah el-Sisi deposed his predecessor Mohammed Morsi in a military coup in 2013 and was elected President of Egypt the following year, however, the Egyptian state has cracked down on press and media freedoms and has imposed harsh restrictions on what themes these dramas can explore and what kinds of narratives they can depict. Academic, novelist and former diplomat Ezzedine Fishere has written novels that were adapted for Egyptian TV. He joins us to discuss the culture of Egyptian TV dramas and what government restrictions have done to the industry.