chapter  3
Believing and practicing in a digital world
Pages 15

This chapter discusses three case studies: Jyllands-Posten cartoons of Muhammad; Pentecostal films in Ghana and Nigeria; PostSecret. On September 30, 2005, the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published a dozen editorial cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad. The cartoons are not reproduced here, but those who wish to view them can find them on the Web with English translations. The paper's editors gave two reasons for publishing the cartoons. In Ghana and Nigeria a new media culture emerged in the early 1990s when cheap video technologies converged with democratization to relax the government's control of the mass media. A local movie industry emerged, producing low-budget melodramatic features about Africans and African concerns. PostSecret is an ongoing community art project where people mail in their secrets anonymously on one side of a homemade postcard. The secrets include hidden desires, reflections on the writer's body or character, reports of sexual transgressions, criminal activities, embarrassing moments, regrets, and expressions of religious faith or doubt.