Islam and Secular Citizenship in the Netherlands, United by Carolina Ivanescu

By Carolina Ivanescu

This e-book combines ethnographic paintings in 3 international locations (The Netherlands, the uk and France) and 3 towns (Rotterdam, Leicester and Marseille) with a brand new theoretical body (regimes of secularity) for figuring out the development of a collective Muslim minority identification in Europe.

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The boundary between the ordinary and transcendental, the sacred and profane, is marked by symbols and rituals, formulae that reinforce the boundaries between the two territories (Turner 1977). Talal Asad, in his quest for a genealogy of secularism, discusses the importance of the Renaissance doctrine of humanism, the Enlightenment concept of nature, and Hegel’s philosophy of history. He observes that secularity consists of a series of ideological inversions, from the meaning given to the transition from monastic life to being a priest within a community, to signifying the transfer of propriety from the church to individuals.

In this process, it loses most of its specific functions, becoming weak and unsubstantial at the individual and also at the collective levels (Bruce 1995, 1996, 2002). Along with Wilson, Bruce believes that modernization has produced an irreversible process that negatively determines the faith in religion. The increasing marginalization of the function of the church, combined with low church attendance, both point to the irreversible decline of institutionalized religion. This decline he calls deintensification.

More to that, the hyphen between the nation and the state links together territory specific historical imaginaries about the role of sovereignty, unity, and difference, translating them into a coherent ordering form that is a normative ordering claim about the world as a whole, and also a way of delimiting and defining population groups. The nation-state is not “real,” but a construction based on myths that legitimate ritual action and a certain order and structuring of the social world. As such, it is first of all a symbolic unit.

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