Chapter

The Identity Debate

Nahid Afrose Kabir

in Young British Muslims

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780748641338
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748653232 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748641338.003.0001
The Identity Debate

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It is generally believed that Muslims share all aspects of Islamic culture and that they are different from the mainstream British population. However, Muslims in Britain are ethnically diverse and heterogeneous in skin colour, language and culture. The only element they have in common is their religion. However, most Muslims feel a strong connection and association with the broader Islamic community (ummah) and have a constant desire for greater Islamic political unity within the ‘Abode of Islam’ (dar-al-Islam. The core of unity among Muslims is the Quran, the word of Allah. While the interpretation of the word of Allah differs across various Muslim groups, the Quran nevertheless provides the same message for all Muslims. This chapter examines identity theory and applies this theory towards an understanding of Muslim identity. It considers whether ‘Britishness’ has any impact on or conflict with the Muslim identity. It also examines the Scottish identity question as well as the debate on ‘Muslim identity’ raised by Channel 4. Before concluding with an overview of the research methodology used in this chapter, it investigates the geopolitical factors that could have an implication on British Muslim's identity.

Keywords: Muslims; Islamic culture; Muslims in Britain; identity theory; Muslim identity; Scottish identity question; British Muslim

Chapter.  10176 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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