Chapter

Muslims and the Politics of Difference

Peter Hopkins and Richard Gale

in Muslims in Britain

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print March 2009 | ISBN: 9780748625871
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748671335 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748625871.003.0011
Muslims and the Politics of Difference

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This chapter addresses issues regarding multiculturalism. European anxieties and phobias in relation to immigration and cultural diversity focus on Muslims more than on any other group. The relation between Muslims and the wider British society and the British state has to be seen in terms of the developing agendas of racial equality and multiculturalism. A key indicator of racial discrimination and inequality has been numerical under-representation. It is shown that while Muslims raise distinctive concerns, the logic of their demands often mirrors those of other equality-seeking groups. The issue between ‘equalising upwards’ and ‘equalising downwards’ is about the legitimacy of religion as a public institutional presence. The emergence of Muslim political agency has thrown British multiculturalism into theoretical and practical disarray. The political integration or incorporation of Muslims has become the most important goal of egalitarian multiculturalism and is pivotal in shaping the security of many people across the globe.

Keywords: British multiculturalism; cultural diversity; Muslims; Muslim political agency; British state; racial equality; racial discrimination; religion

Chapter.  7648 words. 

Subjects: Islam

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