Young Canadian Muslim women describe how they are stereotyped

The Globe and Mail – July 3, 2011
This Globe and Mail article describes the experiences of young Canadian Muslims in the Greater Toronto Area and how they are often negatively seen in Canadian public space. High-profile stories, including the Toronto 18 terrorism bust, the murder of Mississauga teenager Aqsa Parvez by her father and brother, and tales of radical youth travelling overseas on jihadist missions, have left many non-Muslims with a skewed understanding of the religion – a faith whose diversity, especially within Canada, is immense, with differences across sect, ethnocultural or national origin, and levels of adherence. The article follows young people who stress that adhering closely to the Qur’anic tenets of the faith does not automatically lead to extremism.

Survey studies radicalization among radical youth in the Netherlands

According to a study released by the Dutch National Coordinator for Counterterrorism (NCTB), extreme-right youth strongly define themselves against Muslims, while fundamentalist Muslim youth barely bother with the right-radical subculture. The survey also suggests non-Muslim youth think, on average, more negatively of Muslims than the reverse.

The study was conducted by the Universities of Amsterdam and Utrecht for the NCTB, to investigate why youth radicalize. It included interviews with extreme-right and fundamentalist Muslim youth, as well as an internet survey of over 1300 13-21 year olds.

The survey notes that Muslim youth experience “symbolic threat” while extreme-right youth experience a more “concrete” danger. Neither group radicalizes because of perceived individual lack of opportunity, responding rather to feelings of injustice for their “own group”. Both groups reject terrorism but tend more strongly towards violence when they feel the system of authority is not legitimate.