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Discursive opportunities for Muslim minorities in West secular Europe : Assessing the discursive opportunities regards the accommodation of Islamic religious practices and counteracting Islamophobia in France, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Germany

LEEUW, M.L. (2018) Discursive opportunities for Muslim minorities in West secular Europe : Assessing the discursive opportunities regards the accommodation of Islamic religious practices and counteracting Islamophobia in France, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Germany.

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Abstract:This search focuses on the concepts of discourse, institutional and discursive opportunity structure in relation to the accommodation of Islamic religious practices and counteracting Islamophobic discourses in France, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Germany. It argues that the interactive spectrum – ranging from the protection of Muslims‘ ‗Muslimness‘ to the accommodation of Muslims‘ ‗Muslimness‘ – differs cross-nationally, still opportunities for Muslim minorities are similar across all four selected countries. That is to say, opportunities can be ordered as follows: protection institutionally, accommodation institutionally, accommodation discursively, and protection discursively. Analysing the main discursive elements provided by data of the EURISLAM project, the visibility aspect and states‘ neutrality indicate resonance discursively forasmuch Islamic religious practices. As to forms of Islamophobia, a paradox lies in the trade-off between generalising, the essentialist character of the concept as noun and the specificity of claims that ‗phobia‘ requires. The absence of an explicit legal definition of Islamophobia that touches upon basic human rights is stretched discursively, while national secular traditions concerning the accommodation of Islamic religious practices and minority rights resonate differently in the discursive realm. This exploration pretends that the protection and accommodation of Muslims‘ Muslimness‘ will most likely take different routes. A post-national institutional direction forasmuch anti-Islamophobic discourse and national path dependency as accommodative driving force would provide an interesting intercommunion regards the ‗Europeanisation of Islam‘ in the near future.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:71 sociology, 88 social and public administration
Programme:European Studies MSc (69303)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/74787
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