Media Appearances and Interviews

The Artist's Role in the Arab Spring

NPR's WBEZ Chicago

"The Artist’s Role in The Arab Spring," 2017

In this "Weekend Passport" episode of Worldview, host Jerome McDonnell interviews Edwards about the role of artists in the Arab spring.

Teach Arabic at Public Schools? Why One Professor Says 'Yes'

PBS's WTTW Chicago

"Teach Arabic at Public Schools? Why One Professor Says 'Yes,'" 2016

Edwards joins Chicago Tonight to discuss the American Academy Language Commission Report and the state of language learning in U.S.

Brian Edwards on US Culture in Iran

"Brian Edwards on US Culture in Iran," 2016

Young Iranians today have more access to American cultural products than ever before, from Shrek dubbed in Farsi to a Gap knockoff store in Tehran. Edwards sat down with World Policy Journal editor emeritus David A. Andelman to discuss the geopolitical implications of this global morphing of American culture and how it affects diplomacy.

Bob Dylan Wins Nobel Prize in Literature

PBS's WTTW Chicago

"Times Are Changing: Bob Dylan Wins Nobel Prize in Literature," 2016

In this episode of Chicago Tonight, Edwards joins Steven Rings and Jimmy Tomasello to discuss the 2016 Nobel Prize in literature.

Op-Eds and Essays

  • "Moving Target: Is ‘Homeland’ Still Racist?," Los Angeles Review of Books, March 31, 2017.
  • As the sixth season of the controversial Showtime series “Homeland” was coming to a close, Edwards identified signs that the show was uncomfortable with its own history of perpetuating Islamophobic stereotypes. Written and filmed immediately before the election of Donald Trump, the show changed course halfway through Season 6. Edwards dissects its change of heart and why and how it matters.

  • "They’ve destroyed us worldwide: Donald Trump, George W. Bush and the destruction of the American century," Salon, January 10, 2016.
  • This op-ed examines the anti-Muslim messages that Donald Trump and the cultural right disseminated during the 2015-16 presidential campaign and how they contributed to the demise of the “American century,” a logic as much as a period in time by which the U.S. offered a positive image of openness, possibility and potential.

    Republished as "The End of the American Century?" in

  • "'Why Islam? Why are Muslims considered the worst by Americans?' The questions young Muslims ask me about Donald Trump and America," Salon, December 26, 2015.
  • This article reports on Edwards’s experiences in Morocco during late 2015 as candidate Trump expressed the first version of what would become the "Muslim ban," and how young Moroccans understood Trump as politician and reality TV star.

    Republished as "Donald Trump in Morocco: How the worst of US culture circulates globally" in and,

  • "The Next to Tumble?," Chicago Tribune and Baltimore Sun, February 10, 2011.
  • This op-ed examines Morocco in its then-historical, political, social and economic conditions and its potential for upheaval in the wake of the Egyptian and Tunisian revolutions, later known as the Arab Spring.

    Reprinted in Arabic translation as "Al Magharbah yahibun malikihum wa baladihum," Maghrib al-Youm (Morocco), 18–24 February 2011, p. 19.

  • "Arab Ambivalence toward Obama and the Race Card," Huffington Post, November 26, 2008.
  • In this op-ed, Edwards argues against the belief that Arab populations were largely enthusiastic about Obama, discussing the ambivalent rhetoric of non-elite Arabs around Obama after his 2008 electoral victory.

    Reprinted on (UK) as "Obama, Race, and Arab Opinion" on November 26, 2008, and on (Berlin, Germany) as "Obama Can Win Back the Arab World" on December 17, 2008.

  • "We're Already Talking to Tehran," Chicago Tribune (Sunday), July 20, 2008.
  • An op-ed on candidate Obama and public comments about dialogue with Iran in the context of digital circulation.

  • "Not Yet, Not There?," Libertas (online journal of the Centre for US Foreign Policy, University of Birmingham, UK), November 15, 2007.
  • "The Maghreb in Black and White," Foreign Policy, October 22, 2009.
  • This review essay explores the issue of Maghrebi racism in relation to the Paris-based magazine Jeune Afrique l’Intelligent’s 2004 five-part series titled "Are Maghrebis Racist?"

    Translated into Spanish and Arabic for FP Spain and FP Arabic.

  • "Desert of Memory," FEED Magazine, October 20, 2000.
  • An essay on Moroccan responses to Paul Bowles’s death.

    Indexed on The Chronicle’s Arts & Letters Daily (

  • "The Campus of the King," Index on Censorship (London), October 14, 1997, online edition.
  • Article reporting on the American-style university Al-Akhawayn University, in Ifrane, Morocco, and controversies over restrictions on free speech there.

  • "The Obscure Language of Survival," Index on Censorship (London), September 29, 1997, online edition.
  • Rapportage on Moroccan intellectuals and state censorship, and means by which they navigate limitations on off-limit subjects.