17 May 2012
The director of the Foundation for Pluralism and Coexistence (FPC), Jose Manuel Lopez, went to Ceuta to participate with the Counselor of Education, Culture and Women, Mabel Deu, in the awarding diplomas ceremony to students of Spanish Language courses for religious leaders, an initiative that also includes the Instituto Cervantes, and that according to Lopez settles Ceuta as an example of normalization of Muslim issues.
The FPC intends to standardize the religious issues, from which the Muslim issues are also a part, and Ceuta in this field is “fundamental” to the State, considered Lopez because “diversity is normal here for years” while in the peninsula, “the people think of Muslims as foreigners” even when 35% of the Muslims living in the country are Spanish.
Americans are closely divided over how comfortable they feel with public religious expression by Muslims. Like so many other issues, however, comfort with these aspects of Muslim culture and religious expression are strongly correlated with age, not only in the general population but also in more conservative circles that register higher overall levels of discomfort.
Recent PRRI research reveals that while white evangelical Protestants overall tend to be less comfortable with public displays of Muslim religion and culture, there is a striking generational divide between older and younger evangelicals. When asked about a variety of public displays of Muslim culture and religious expression (including Muslim women wearing the burqa and Muslim men praying in an airport), younger white evangelicals (age 18-39) are far more likely to say they are comfortable with these displays than their older counterparts (age 40 and up).
ANU COLLEGE OF ARTS AND SOCIAL SCIENCES
8 – 9 March 2012
The Australian National University’s Centre for European Studies and
Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies will be jointly hosting an
international conference exploring the themes of Muslims in Europe and
Europe’s relations with the Muslim world.
Scholars specialising in Islamic and Middle East studies, European
studies, and the wider fields of Humanities and the Social Sciences are
invited to participate in this multidisciplinary forum. Historical
perspectives and contemporary analyses are welcome in the following areas:
– Religious and cultural diversity in Islam;
– Muslims, civil society, democracy and secularism;
– Impact of Islam in European history;
– Impact of recent events in the Middle East;
– Cultural identities and the Arts.
Professor Neal Robinson, Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies
Offers for 20 minute presentations are invited for consideration by 1 September 2011.
Please send presentation title, abstract of 200 words (max.) and short
Convenors: Professor Jacqueline Lo, Centre for European Studies and
Robinson, Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies
Venue: Sir Roland Wilson Building, McCoy Circuit (Building 120), ANU,
8 July 2011
Family and friends of a 22 year old Turkish man found dead in his detention cell in the Netherlands are accusing police of brutality. Dutch officials claim the young man died of a heart attack. The man was arrested in Beverwijk after a fight with a bistro owner regarding use of the restrooms. He was detained by police using physical force after attempting to resist, and was found dead 12 hours after being taken to custody. Arif Yakisir, head of the Federation of Turkish Islamic Culture Associations commented that the organization would send a letter of condemnation to the police department and the Ministry of the Interior. Mehmet Yaramis of the Islamic Federation of the Netherlands commented that racism was involved in the incident.
Underlining the fact that Islam has become a part of Germany, the Council of Culture has published a dossier called “Islam, Culture, Politics” on how Islam is practiced and set into context in Germany. After the debates of the past months, which had been dominated by the condescending remarks of Thilo Sarrazin, publisher Olaf Zimmermann wanted to step back an provide a more nuanced view of Islam, its culture and politics. The document will be distributed at parliament, Church academies, public libraries, and also at mosques. The dossier does not only want to write about Muslims, but also incorporates public figures of the Muslim population, such as the Central Council’s chairman Aiman Mazyek, who participated in the publication (Frankfurter Rundschau).
Underlining the fact that Islam has become a part of Germany, the Council of Culture has published a dossier called Islam, Culture, Politics on how Islam is practiced and set into context in Germany. After the debates of the past months, which had been dominated by the condescending remarks of Thilo Sarrazin, publisher Olaf Zimmermann wanted to step back an provide a more nuanced view of Islam, its culture and politics. The document will be distributed at parliament, Church academies, public libraries, and also at mosques. The dossier does not only want to write about Muslims, but also incorporates public figures of the Muslim population, such as the Central Council’s chairman Aiman Mazyek, who participated in the publication
In Britain’s highly politicized social climate in the aftermath of the 7/7 London bombings, this book provides an in-depth understanding of British Muslim identity. The author conducted ethnographic fieldwork in the form of in-depth, semi-structured interviews of over 200 young Muslims in five British cities: London, Leicester, Bradford, Leeds and Cardiff.
Kabir’s careful analysis of interview responses offers insights into the hopes and aspirations of British Muslims from remarkably diverse ethnicities. By emphasizing the importance of biculturalism, the author conveys a realistic and hopeful vision for their successful integration into British society.
Young British Muslims is available for purchase from Edinburgh University Press.
Nahid Afrose Kabir is a visiting fellow at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard University, USA. She is the author of Muslims in Australia: Immigration, Race Relations and Cultural History (London: Routledge 2005).
14 August 2010
The company Puma has asked the German fashion label Styleislam to withdraw one of their popular shirt slogans. The “Juma” shirts, remembering Friday, the Muslim day of prayer, resemble the Puma logo in font, with the puma icon replaced by a praying person. To prevent Puma from bringing the issue to court, Styleislam has agreed to no longer sell any Juma shirts, which the company has accepted. However, Puma still demands Styleislam pay the lawyer’s fees. Styleislam made clear that Juma is only one among many slogans and images printed on their shirts, and that they never intended to breach the copyright.
The Ruhr area, a former industrial region and this year’s European Culture Capital, will place Islam at the center of its arts festival the Ruhr-Triennale. Leaving headscarf and minaret debates aside, producer Decker seeks to explore religiosity and its link to movement and journey, which plays a particularly large role in Islam, and eventually to art. After focusing on Judaism last time, the forthcoming productions will explore Islamic myths and mysticism in theater, dance, music and prose performances. The festival will take place from August to October, and the 37 productions and 130 performances will be opened by the premiere of “Leila and Majun”, a Persian “Romeo and Juliet”.
About 5000 pieces comprise the Smithsonian Museum’s Islamic Art exhibit, representing the traditions of Iran, Egypt, Turkey, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, and more. The exhibition, running from Oct. 24-Jan 24, features 65 works of art from Istanbul, Paris, Geneva, and Berlin.
Each year, the museum honors one country and features a special exhibit in celebration of its art and culture. This year, the country is Iran.
“What we are trying to do is focus the attention on the arts and cultures of Iran,” says Massumeh Farhad, chief of Islamic art at the Freer and Sackler galleries.
The Smithsonian official denied any association between the focus on the Iranian culture and the ongoing political showdown between the two countries.
Farhad believes that showcasing a unique Islamic culture like Iran’s to Americans should always be apart from any political agendas.
“What we can do is to highlight the aspects of culture, regardless of what happens in politics.”