From The National Newspaper (United Arab Emirates)
Have you heard the one about the Palestinian-Sicilian lawyer who gave up his day job to convince the world Arabs can be funny?
Dean Obeidallah believes in comedy with an underlying message. As the co-founder of the New York Arab-American Comedy Festival, which kicks off today with more than 50 performers from around the world, including Dubai, he thinks jokes can be used to break down stereotypes.
“Comedy has a long tradition of raising political and racial issues in America,” he says. “Jewish-American and African-American communities have been doing it for years.
“There are more Arab and Jewish comedians and actors than there were 20 years ago, whether it’s filmmaking, directing or working in the entertainment business.