By John R. Bowen
Can Islam Be French? is an anthropological exam of the way Muslims are responding to the stipulations of lifestyles in France. Following up on his e-book Why the French don't love Headscarves, John Bowen turns his realization clear of the views of French non-Muslims to target these of the country's Muslims themselves. Bowen asks no longer the standard question--how good are Muslims integrating in France?--but, quite, how do French Muslims take into consideration Islam? specifically, Bowen examines how French Muslims are fashioning new Islamic associations and constructing new methods of reasoning and educating. He appears at the various fairly special ways that mosques have hooked up with broader social and political forces, how Islamic academic marketers have formed niches for brand new sorts of education, and the way significant Islamic public actors have set out a in particular French method of spiritual norms. All of those efforts have provoked sharp responses in France and from in a foreign country facilities of Islamic scholarship, so Bowen additionally seems to be heavily at debates over how--and how far--Muslims may still adapt their spiritual traditions to those new social stipulations. He argues that the actual ways that Muslims have settled in France, and during which France governs religions, have created incentives for Muslims to boost new, pragmatic methods of pondering spiritual concerns in French society.
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Additional info for Can Islam Be French?: Pluralism and Pragmatism in a Secularist State (Princeton Studies in Muslim Politics)
This profile in turn has Fashioning the French Islamic Landscape • 19 shaped public deliberations in France: the most visible Islamic public actors in deliberations and activities in France come from a North African background and share a common religious frame of reference. These features have made it easier for them to form national umbrella organizations and to work across country boundaries than would otherwise have been the case (and than is the case elsewhere in Europe). Put another way, the fissions and quarrels that do surface among public actors have been due more to competition between individuals (and sometimes between mosques) than to differences in religious ideas and histories or in background language and culture.
Outside of these institutionally based Islamic authorities in France are independent speakers (such as the Swiss-born Tariq Ramadan), networks of students and activists, and the many Islamic scholars and public figures in Muslim-majority countries, accessible through the Internet but also through books and lectures in France. I will refer to a number of these people in the following chapters. 39 But the colonial administration of Muslims itself had operated on the basis of unresolved questions concerning the citizenship of Muslims and the role of the French state in controlling Islam, and particularly so in the case of Algeria.
He met me at his school, in the splendid crimson robes and cap he wears on his outsize frame for the Friday prayers. We drove in the large van that he uses to take pupils on outings, and crossed through the suburbs along the northern border of Paris to Clichy. We had some extra time, so he showed me the city, which consists mainly of HLM projects built in the 1970s. “They look like matchboxes,” he commented. ” We parked next to the housing projects that contain his mosque. We could see a long dark stain where a car had been burned the previous fall.