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1970's Love: Mind Your Language (when racialism rocked)

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

In the name of God, Compassionate, Merciful بسم الله الرحمن الرحيمِ | Peace be with you السلام عليكم

In the name of God, compassionate & merciful بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ | Peace be with you السلام عليكم


I found a 'golden oldie' from 1977, a period when racism was rampant and broadcasted weekly on British television. Mind Your Language is a British sitcom series that ran for around 4 seasons. It's based on the language and cultural clashes that occur when a bunch of international immigrants living in Britain, attend an English speaking class lead by one Mr. Brown.

The first series was in my opinion superior because it introduced the 'foreign' characters with hilarious cultural baggage, and portrays the typical 'white man' as being unintentionally racist. The ethnic students find conflict with each other - usually based on their native homeland problems (for example China & Japan's political war) and misinterpret their teacher's instructions. Even more ironic is that undying 'white' supremist attitude represented by the head: Miss Courtney.

Part of my upbringing involved exposure to various communities such as those shown in the videos. Both of my parents teach languages too; sometimes they use these clips in their lessons. The reactions and role-plays from their students based on MYL are magic.

Before you watch them, you must listen very carefully to everything they say. "Ali's" character has the best role in terms of happy-go-lucky attitude and his English is the funniest; Miss Courtney is a blatant racist, Mr Brown the teacher tries to be neutral but does get caught up in the religious debates. So much more happens that insults the English language but, enough!

Squeeze me, please to be watching the veedeeoh:




Does you ever face this form of 'accepted racism' today?
Are Muslims victims of or perpetrators of 'subtle' discrimination?



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MuslimFirst said...

HAhahahahahahahahahahahahah, that was hilarious I must say. First time I've seen this show.

-"What's your name"
-"Han ji? Kya kaha?"

-"Brown? Oh no"
-"You are commmitting a mistake! We are brown" LOOOOL!

-"I work with shiiiiips"

I like Ali - yes his English is the funniest! "Squeeze me please lady. I am coming for to learn the English. Hoping to be unrolled." So Ms. Courtney is sexist in this clip of course.

Sorry, as for your questions - I don't think I've faced any such situation. I do think us brown people in a general sense (or at least the older generation) have been known to be racist against the black race.

Thanks for sharing Sis Zaufishan.
PS. My fav Eng show was "Are You Being Served?"

MuslimFirst said...

Whoa - just watched the other two parts. Pretty intense there, but funny.

Zaufishan said...

@MF - I watched Are you being Served too! I remember the ghay-ish counter guy and the woman with the purple fluff for hair... My parents would watch M.A.S.H & the A-Team and British Steptoe & son and others I'ma have to find!
See you in a few weeks then inshaAllah!

MuslimFirst said...

Sr. Zaufishan - I don't know if this is a good or bad thing, but you've got me hooked on Mind Your Language - been watching episodes when I need a laugh, which is often in this stressful world.

Arif said...

Reading this post brought back so many memories. I just LOVED Mind your Language. Our class put together two skits of MYL. Pity the youtube link is no longer active, was really looking forward to see it.

Zaufishan said...

@Arif, salam'alaikum. Oh blimey, have embedded new veedeeoh. Danke for pointin' it out.

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