Chapter

Muslims, equality and secularism<sup>1</sup>

Tariq Modood

in Religion, spirituality and the social sciences

Published by Policy Press

Published in print September 2008 | ISBN: 9781847420411
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303190 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781847420411.003.0004
Muslims, equality and secularism1

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In many European countries, roughly 5 per cent of the citizens is comprised of non-White citizens. It is believed that this number will rise to 50 per cent in the next decades, as this population is young and fertile. Of these non-White citizens, Muslims form a third of the non-White population. This newly settled population of Muslims is feared by many people in Europe because of terrorism associated with Muslims. Many of the centre-left intellectuals and social scientists fear that Muslims will be a threat to the Enlightenment heritage of Europe. There is a perception that Muslims are making politically exceptional, culturally unreasonable, and theologically alien demands on European states. This chapter uses the Islam case to examine how Europe copes with overt religious identities and politicised religious communities. It argues that the multicultural politics of Europe, specifically of Britain, must embrace moderate secularism and resist radical secularism to allow religious equality and multicultural equality.

Keywords: Muslims; Europe; Islam; religious identities; religious communities; multicultural politics; moderate secularism; radical secularism; religious equality; multicultural equality

Chapter.  6159 words. 

Subjects: Sociology of Religion

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