Contemporary Islam

http://link.springer.com/journal/11562

List of Papers (Total 20)

Two cultures, one identity: formulations of Australian Isma’ili Muslim identity

The Shi’a Imami Nizari Isma’ili Muslims have often been considered the “poster child” for pluralistic integration (Cayo 2008). This ethos has been inculcated within members of the community, with its adherents seeing themselves as a diverse and multi-ethnic collective. Nevertheless, despite this purported pluralism, social research on the Isma’ilis has primarily focused on the ...

Intimate strangers: perspectives on female converts to Islam in Britain

This article explores the relationships between female converts to Islam in Britain and their close friends and family. It pays attention to the perspectives of converts but focuses on the reactions of their intimates to the conversion. We argue that converts become ‘intimate strangers’ through conversion—estranged on the level of understanding and belief but intimate on the ...

Janus’ Voice: Religious Leaders, Framing, and Riots in Kano

This article analyses the role of religious leaders in collective violence in Kano, the major urban centre in northern Nigeria. It compares two episodes of collective action in the city—the violent ‘Plateau riots’ in 2004 and the non-violent ‘cartoon protests’ in 2006—to explore the role of religious leaders in the variation in violence between the two events. The core argument is ...

Struggles over access to the Muslim public sphere: Multiple publics and discourses on agency, belonging and citizenship (Introduction to the Themed Section)

This introductory essay provides the context for the articles in this Themed Section. Despite the diversity in locations, historical backgrounds and contemporary processes of change, all contributors to this Themed Section focus on the struggle of Muslim groups over access to an emergent Muslim public sphere. They highlight the contestations of and shifts in the notions of agency, ...

Islam in the academic sphere in senegal: the case of Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar (UCAD)

This paper discusses the changing socio-cultural landscape at Cheikh Anta Diop University of Dakar (UCAD), Senegal. It shows how the growing influence of the religious phenomenon since the late 1970s has encouraged young students to develop an Islamic activism that tends to replace the revolutionary and secular traditions that had dominated the space since the founding of this ...

The British state ‘security syndrome’ and Muslim diversity: challenges for liberal democracy in the age of terror

This paper explores the securitisation of British Muslims within a global context in which tensions are reignited by the threat that Islamist terrorism, and Islam more generally, are considered to pose to the West. While Western involvement in Muslim-majority countries continues to fuel the idea of a ‘clash of civilisations’, domestic responses to terrorism and extremism take ...

The long arm of the state? Transnationalism, Islam, and nation-building: the case of Turkey and Morocco

From the moment the first Turkish and Moroccan workers migrated to Europe in the early 1960s, the Turkish and Moroccan states have been concerned with how to bind emigrated citizens to their country of origin. In this article, we focus on Islam as a multi-dimensional binding mechanism. Religion is a broad register that links emotion, affect, and senses of belonging and binds ...

Separate or together? Women-only public spaces and participation of Saudi women in the public domain in Saudi Arabia

Gender segregation in the public domain has become a cornerstone of the Saudi interpretation of Islam (Doumato 2009). It is a development that has led to the coming about of extensive separate public spaces that are only for women (Doumato 2009; Hamdan 2005; Le Renard 2008, 2014). In these women-only public spaces, women undertake activities that are by them and for them, therewith ...

Religion at the cemetery Islamic Burials in the Netherlands and Belgium

Death, dying, and burial are not only matters restricted to the experiences and emotions of an individual, but also social events. The rituals that accompany these events are central to the identities and meanings that groups construct for themselves. They can be viewed as windows that open out onto the ways societies view themselves and the world around them (Gardner, Journal of ...

Silence, pleasure and agency: sexuality of unmarried girls in Dakar, Senegal

The article investigates the way unmarried Muslim girls in contemporary Dakar construct their sexuality. It explores in what way and to what extent female sexuality is being silenced, and if any, in what way pleasure and sexual agency are present in the narratives of those girls about their intimate lives. Such an analysis is called for in relation to understanding young people’s ...

‘Repentant’ artists in Egypt: debating gender, performing arts and religion

This article explores the emergent public sphere in Egypt in the early 1990s by analysing the debates about the ‘repentant’ artists. Many artists, mostly women but also a few men, stepped down from art for religious reasons. Some of them even started to preach against art because they considered their former profession haram. The ‘repentance’ of so many famous performers led to ...

The meta-theory of piety: reflections on the work of Saba Mahmood

This paper discusses the extent to which Saba Mahmood’s ideas about Muslim women and agency are relevant for works beyond her ethnographic speciality. The first part will reflect upon her arguments about Muslim female piety within the larger context of progressive politics in the USA and the Middle East. The second part will describe the implications of Mahmood’s work towards the ...

Staying close by moving out. The contextual meanings of personal autonomy in the life stories of women of Moroccan descent in The Netherlands

This article focuses on the themes of personal autonomy and communion in the life stories of highly educated women of Moroccan descent in The Netherlands. It is argued that the task to make the most of what The Netherlands have to offer whilst staying loyal to parents who have paved the road, creates a double bind which is the motor behind the development of the ‘plot’ of all ...