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Hear the One About the Canadian Muslims?

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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FUN GAL Nawaz In today's New York Times, Neil MacFarquhar looks at a new Canadian TV show called Little Mosque on the Prairie, which:

Ventures into new and perhaps treacherous terrain: trying to explore the funny side of being a Muslim and adapting to life in post 9/11 North America. Its creators admit to uneasiness as to whether Canadians and Americans can laugh about the daily travails of those who many consider a looming menace.
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Before you start thinking the show is a Danish cartoonists'-style salvo in the war between the East and the West, MacFarquhar introduces readers to the show's creator, Zarqa Nawaz, a Muslim woman who, like the characters on Little Mosque, has lived in Saskatchewan for ten years. Nawaz heads up a production company called Fundamentalist Films, whose website boast the mission: "Putting the FUN back into Fundamentalism." She tells the paper, "It rests on my shoulders to get the balance right between entertainment and representing the community in a reasonable way."

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Well, it doesn't rest on her shoulders alone. According to the Times, one of the show's writers, Al Rae, "does research by bouncing potential scenarios off cab drivers." Muslim cab driver!?! Talk about a pitch for hilarious TV show!

Cabbie-quoting Thomas L. Friedman would be proud.

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