Chapter

Muslims in Europe: Precedent and Present

H. A. Hellyer

in Muslims of Europe The ‘Other’ Europeans

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print September 2009 | ISBN: 9780748639472
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748671342 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748639472.003.0005
Muslims in Europe: Precedent and Present

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Muslim history in Europe has a rather long, albeit complicated, tenure. As a result of this, there are many Muslim communities left in eastern, southern and northern Europe, while the majority in the west (such as those in the United Kingdom, France and the Netherlands) are of more recent origin, owing to migration from former colonies or to recruitment drives resulting from labour shortages (as in Germany, Sweden and Denmark). Conversions to Islam are also on the rise, showing that Muslims are a growing and self-evident reality in the European landscape, and one which presents particular challenges and problems. Across the European Union, the greatest challenge to emerging definitions of pluralism and to ways of coping with it invariably comes from Muslim communities. This chapter shows that the Muslim presence is not recent, but has a long history in European societies. From the Middle Ages through pre-modernity to the present day, Muslims have played a considerable role in the development of European thought and culture.

Keywords: Muslims; Europe; Islam; France; Denmark; European Union; pluralism; history; culture; United Kingdom

Chapter.  7642 words. 

Subjects: Islam

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