Deradicalisation Programme Successful in Saving Young Muslims from Extremism, Study Finds

11 April 2011

A study by the Universities Police Science Institute of Cardiff University has found that counterterrorism strategies have shown positive effects. In particular, it is reported that 1,000 young Muslims, who were at risk of being wooed by al-Qaida, have been monitored under a deradicalisation programme, the “Channel Programme”, which caused the number to decline by 50 per cent. The study also highlights that “Muslim communities have a higher level of trust and confidence in the police than the general population”, and paints a positive picture of the counterterrorism Prevent strategy.

New Book: Chris Allen’s, “Islamophobia”

‘This timely and accessible book rests upon many years of careful research by a scholar whose early career has been devoted to understanding and critically evaluating the complex notion of Islamophobia. It will become a standard work of reference, as well as stimulating future discussion. There are insights in Allen’s work that deserve to be appreciated by students from a variety of disciplines, as well as a more general readership’.

-Sophie Gilliat-Ray, Director, Islam-UK Centre,
Cardiff University, UK

“Muslims in Britain: An Introduction” by Sophie Gilliat-Ray (Cardiff University) Cambridge University Press, June 2010

Archaeological evidence shows there was contact between Muslims and the British Isles from the 8th century. Beginning with these historical roots, Sophie Gilliat-Ray traces the major points of encounter between Muslims and the British in subsequent centuries, and explores Muslim migration to Britain in recent times. Drawing upon sociology, anthropology, politics, and geography, this comprehensive survey provides an informed understanding of the daily lives of British Muslims. It portrays the dynamic of institutions such as families, mosques and religious leadership, and analyses their social and political significance in today’s Britain. Through the study of the historical origins of major Islamic reform movements, it draws attention to the religious diversity within different Muslim communities, and sheds fresh light on contemporary issues such as the nature of religious authority and representation. It also considers British Muslim civic engagement and cultural life, particularly the work of journalists, artists, sports personalities, and business entrepreneurs.

Acknowledgements; Preface; Part I. Historical and Religious Roots: 1. The roots of Islam in Britain; 2. The development of Muslim communities; 3. Middle Eastern religious reform movements; 4. South Asian religious reform movements; Part II. Contemporary Dynamics: 5. Profiling British Muslim communities; 6. Religious nurture and education; 7. Religious leadership; 8. Mosques; 9. Gender, religious identity and youth; 10. Engagement and enterprise; Epilogue; Appendix: Source notes for researchers; List of references; Glossary; Index.

Cardiff University Jameel MA Scholarships – 3 scholarships available starting in September 2010 on the MA in ‘Islam in Contemporary Britain’

Eligibility for MA Scholarships

* A first class or very high upper-second class honors degree or equivalent in a relevant subject from a recognized university.
* Evidence of a clear ambition to develop an academic research career in the area of Islam and Muslims in Britain
* Proven track-record of interest in, and/or enthusiasm for working with British Muslims

Level of Scholarships Available

Each successful MA Jameel Scholar will receive the following scholarship package: Full-time MA fees for the one-year duration and a stipend for one year (£14,800 for the 2010/11 academic year including conference fees)

Most Muslim coverage ‘negative’

Researchers looking at the way British Muslims are represented by the media say they have found that most coverage is negative in tone. A Cardiff University team behind the study looked at nearly 1,000 newspaper articles from the past eight years. Two-thirds focused on terrorism or cultural differences, and much of it used words such as militancy, radicalism and fundamentalist. The research was commissioned by Channel Four’s Dispatches. Dr Paul Mason, a member of the team, said the team looked at three areas. They carried out a statistical analysis looking at types of stories and the way Muslims were described and the language used, the photographs used alongside the stories and they analysed the types of case studies used. He said: “We looked at both nouns and adjectives and the way in which British Muslims were described.

Wales studies Muslim kids

A leading Welch university will conduct a two-year study on Muslim children’s attitudes towards culture and religion, the Western Mail daily reported. “We are interested in that younger age group and how they reconcile their multiple identities, such as being Somali, Pakistani, or Yemeni, with being Muslim and Welsh and so on,” said Dr Sophie Gilliat-Ray, from the Islam UK Center at Cardiff University.

Church In Wales Recalls Magazine With Mohammed Cartoon

The Anglican Church in Wales said it was recalling all copies of its Welsh-languge Y Llan (Church) magazine that features a French cartoon depicting the Prophet Mohammed. Taken from the France-Soir newspaper, the cartoon shows Mohammed on a heavenly cloud with Buddha, Moses, and God who tells him: “Don’t complain, Mohammed, we’ve all been caricatured here.” “The Church in Wales is thoroughly investigating how this cartoon came to be reproduced in Y Llan,” a spokesman for Barry Morgan, the Archbishop of Wales, said Tuesday. He added that Morgan had sent apologies to the Muslim Council of Wales for any offence caused. The cartoon was used to illustrate an article in Y Llan — which has a circulation of about 400 copies — about the shared ancestry of Christianity, Islam and Judaism. It first appeared in France-Soir on February 2, a day after the Paris-based daily reproduced a collection of Danish cartoons which touched off a wave of sometimes violent protests by Muslims around the world. Last month, a Cardiff University student union newspaper was withdrawn after it printed one of the Danish cartoons.