American Virtual Colonialism and the Islamophobia Politics: Muslim/Iranian Women’s “Hijab” at “YouTube”


1 Professor, Faculty of World Studies, University of Tehran

2 PhD Candidate, American Student,Faculty of World Studies, University of Tehran


Virtual Colonialism (Ameli, 2011) is reflecting a new trend of colonialism
in the virtual space parallel to the physical space. According to Ameli(2007), with
the “Dual Spacization” of life,the imperial powers like the United States of America
take the advantage of the synchronization and translocality of the virtual space to
expand their realm of imperial power through the “attraction” and “persuasion”
strategies with the least costs and losses.
The present paper analyzes the user-based website “YouTube” exploiting the
critical discourse analysis method to examine the strategies through which it represents
the Muslim/Iranian women whose identity arehighlighted by Hijab. The
results indicate that the Americanization by “YouTube” is implemented in
auser-based in a pluralist context. This is while the American discourse including
the liberal democracy values and its politics ofIslamophobic and Iranophobic
images of Muslims are prevalent in the “YouTube”.
The paper depicts how the representation of Muslim woman and her hijab is
demonized through the “YouTube” result videos.Furthermore, it shows this
demonization is duplicated in the case of the Iranian Muslim women particularly
because of the formal American politics of Iranophobia and regime change in Iran.
Taking into account the high rank of “YouTube” as the third globally-viewed American
website and its discursive advantage in the virtual space, the significance of the
present study can be considerable.