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A Critical Evaluation of How Muslims Living in Britain Can be Both British and Muslim
Religion and Theology
Pages 15 (3765 words)
Defining ‘British Muslim’ seems quite easy on the surface. But in reality, defining being both a British and a Muslim is very difficult. It involves a long history of political, social, cultural, and economic struggle
Issues of identity in Britain have largely centred on the concept of ‘otherness’. Muslims were considered ‘aliens’ in the 1950s and 1960s. The term ‘alien’ means otherness, and also means difference, threat, and inequality (Ahmad and Sardar, 2012: 2). Towards the latter part of the 20th century, cultural difference became very popular and otherness became the latest thing. Difference is no longer intimidating; and otherness today is valued for its commercial aspect, the exoticism and delight it could provide. Still, identity has been one of the most important concerns for Muslims living in Britain. Contrary to earlier thoughts on identity, which view it in quite permanent terms, the present belief is changeable and continuously influenced by the evolving environment. This essay critically evaluates how Muslims living in Britain can be both British and Muslim. This essay analyses the historical events, social and political aspects, and cultural factors that contributed to the creation of a distinctive Muslim identity. The different features of identity class, ethnicity and religion are believed to be subjected to historical dynamics, and it is viewed as being continuously reinterpreted and recreated according to external and internal factors. The diverse and worldly characteristic of British society is believed to create various opposing identities. ...
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