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    The past several years have seen many examples of friction between secular European societies and religious migrant communities within them. This study combines ethnographic work in three countries (The Netherlands, the United Kingdom,... more
    The past several years have seen many examples of friction between secular European societies and religious migrant communities within them. This study combines ethnographic work in three countries (The Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and France) with a new theoretical frame (regimes of secularity). Its mission is to contribute to an understanding of minority identity construction in secular societies. In addition to engaging with academic literature and ethnographic research, the book takes a critical look at three cities, three nation-contexts, and three grassroots forms of Muslim religious collective organization, comparing and contrasting them from a historical perspective.
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    Western European nation-states are diverse and plural. Many Muslims are citizens of France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. While everybody seems to know to a certain extent who Muslims are and what Islam is, there is also... more
    Western European nation-states are diverse and plural. Many Muslims are citizens of France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. While everybody seems to know to a certain extent who Muslims are and what Islam is, there is also disagreement about what this label implies. A wide variety of signifiers are attached to this name: when we think of Muslims we alternatively think of religion, we think of migrants and minorities, of populations with low socio-economic position, of terrorists and radicals and while many other images pop immediately to mind. These labels may be stereotypes. They may generalize. But they are also used as forms of self-identification. Furthermore, these meanings do not necessarily exclude each other, but together form a field of significance which is constructed by all the actors taking part in the construction of meaning: a field of Muslimness.

    The liberal state looks at Muslims through two paradigms of subjectivization, one targeting their Otherness in terms of religion, namely the regime of secularity, which draws upon the concept of the secular and the way a certain understanding of the social relevance of religion was captured and minutely discussed in the theory of secularization; second, through the paradigm of citizenship, which deals with members of the nation-state in a neutral and egalitarian manner through its different institutions, various levels of governing and many mechanisms of inclusion and exclusion. In this book I am arguing that these two paradigms mentioned above are essential for understanding the position of European Muslims today. Although they can be seen as a double disadvantage Muslims as members of western liberal states encounter (Modood 2005, 2010), they can also present windows of opportunity for Muslims. While the opposition between the West and the East and the special negative attention given to Islam is not new but rather a permanent feature of the history of western thought (Wheatcroft 2004), Muslims can now engage with these images from the position of citizens. One of these windows of opportunity is the possibility to rethink and re-evaluate the role and place of religion in modern society.
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    ... Thus, when we hear or read of a person's conversion, we must pay aention to the rhetorical features.24 In Saurabh Dube's presentation of the movement of western Chris-tianity into colonial central ...... more
    ... Thus, when we hear or read of a person's conversion, we must pay aention to the rhetorical features.24 In Saurabh Dube's presentation of the movement of western Chris-tianity into colonial central ... Dube reports the accounts of two individuals, Ramnath Bajpai and Johann Purti ...
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    The dilemmas of dealing with difference are currently at the heart of our society. Among the anomalies of our age is the survival and even flourishing of complex systems of values based on religion. However, we see that mosques flourish,... more
    The dilemmas of dealing with difference are currently at the heart of our society. Among the anomalies of our age is the survival and even flourishing of complex systems of values based on religion. However, we see that mosques flourish, ethnic associations with religious undertones multiply and religion is present in the public sphere through conflicts about religion or persons believed to be religious. Islam is a much discussed topic. The line between private and public religion is as thin as ever, and I would argue so is the line between religion and politics. This can be observed at two levels. First, the invocation of religion in the political discourse, leading to the politicisation of religion and second, as the influence religion has on political life, the religionisation of politics.
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