Heavy Metal Islam

Produced by Here on Earth: Radio Without Borders

Original Broadcast: September 25, 2008


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Scholar Mark LeVine and director Saroosh Alvi joined Jean Feraca to discuss Muslim youth and heavy metal. Playing in concerts throughout the Middle East, heavy metal bands express their frustration with religious traditions and ongoing violent conflict through music. Metal heads represent Islam today just as much as their peers praying in a mosque, studying at the madrassa, or even training to be al-Qaeda extremists.


Mark LeVine is Professor of Modern Middle Eastern History, Culture and Islamic Studies at University of California, Irvine. His most recently published book, Heavy Metal Islam, outlines his study of political voices in Middle East and collaboration with Muslim heavy metal bands as a professional musician. Read the entire bio on his homepage.

Suroosh Alvi co-directed Heavy Metal in Baghdad with Eddy Moretti. He is also co-founder of VICE Publishing, an independent media source in 22 countries. Read his entire bio on the Heavy Metal in Baghdad hompage.

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Last update: March 10, 2009.