Four Lions (2010) - Satirical film written and directed by Chris Morris (of Brass Eye and The Day Today fame) following four incompetent jihadists training to carry out an act of terror. Whilst the focus is on male Muslim characters it is a very good example of an alternative perspective that challenges current stereotypes.
Malala Yousafzai - Her family runs a chain of schools in the region. In early 2009, when she was 11–12, Yousafzai wrote a blog under a pseudonym for the BBC Urdu detailing her life under Taliban occupation, their attempts to take control of the valley, and her views on promoting education for girls in the Swat Valley. The following summer, journalist Adam B. Ellick made a New York Times documentary about her life as the Pakistani military intervened in the region. Yousafzai rose in prominence, giving interviews in print and on television, and she was nominated for the International Children's Peace Prize by South African activist Desmond Tutu.
On the afternoon of 9 October 2012, Yousafzai boarded her school bus in the northwest Pakistani district of Swat. A gunman asked for her by name, then pointed a pistol at her and fired three shots. One bullet hit the left side of Yousafzai's forehead, travelled under her skin through the length of her face, and then went into her shoulder. In the days immediately following the attack, she remained unconscious and in critical condition, but later her condition improved enough for her to be sent to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, England, for intensive rehabilitation. On 12 October, a group of 50 Muslim clerics in Pakistan issued a fatwā against those who tried to kill her, but the Taliban reiterated their intent to kill Yousafzai and her father, Ziauddin Yousafzai. The assassination attempt sparked a national and international outpouring of support for Yousafzai. Deutsche Welle wrote in January 2013 that Yousafzai may have become "the most famous teenager in the world." United Nations Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown launched a UN petition in Yousafzai's name, demanding that all children worldwide be in school by the end of 2015; it helped lead to the ratification of Pakistan's first Right to Education Bill.
A fascinating and important case study example - a strong, educated, inclusive female Muslim who fights for equal rights, education for all and has achieved so much coverage globally. This is useful to analyse according to representation - how Malala challenges dominant, repeated examples of female Muslims as subservient.
Samantha Louise Lewthwaite is a British woman who is one of the Western world's most wanted terrorism suspects. Lewthwaite, the widow of 7/7 London terrorist bomber Germaine Lindsay, is accused of causing the deaths of more than 400 people. She is a fugitive from justice in Kenya, where she was wanted on charges of possession of explosives and conspiracy to commit a felony and is the subject of an Interpol Red Notice requesting her arrest with a view to extradition.
Lewthwaite was an alleged member of the Somalia-based radical Islamic militant group Al-Shabaab. She was accused of orchestrating grenade attacks at non-Muslim places of worship, and is believed to have been behind an attack on those watching football in a bar in Mombasa during Euro 2012. In September 2013, there was speculation over her possible involvement in the Westgate shopping mall attack, although other reports cast doubt on this. She was dubbed the "White Widow" by the news media, a play on words referencing her race, the death of her first husband.
An example of citizen journalism/self representation from a group of female muslim teenagers who are recording and commenting on their day to day lives and the cultural differences to the west are clear to see and yet they are typical teenagers in every other way - rebellious, challenging authority, bright, inquisitive.
Britz is a two-part drama serial written and directed by BAFTA-winning director Peter Kosminsky and first screened by Channel 4 in the United Kingdom in October and November 2007. Britz attempts to understand what would lead a second generation Muslim to turn against the country of their birth. The film makes references to the July 2005 London bombings, and the 2006 Forest Gate raid.
Another text to challenge stereotypes and to highlight the complex relationship between more contemporary and traditional perspectives