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Islam in Europe - Essay Example

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Islam in Europe

The chief among them is that Islamic law differs from the laws of ‘first world’ countries of Europe, and that Islam dominates lifestyle and culture of millions of Muslims in Europe (Roald, 2001, p 295- 296). Islam: Family Law The Islamic family law does not support the ‘liberal -minded ‘European family law. In European countries family laws support step families, unmarried spouse, nuclear families, free mixing of both the sexes, and above all, the equality of sexes. Conventional Islamic law holds male members of a family to be superior compared to their female counterparts. More importance is given to them and they also hold decision making power. Also, Islam propagates the doctrine of large family with many members (BuChler, 2013, p 100). Many orthodox Muslim families in Europe still abide by the Islamic family law which separates the rules and rights of women from men. However, in European countries like Bulgaria, modern age Muslim families are denouncing secularism (Ghodsee, 2009, p 5). The newer generations of Muslims are more in support of ‘multiculturalism’ and ‘tolerance’ policies that are held by European nations. They are not much affected by the fact that predominantly Islamic nations like Egypt has stressed CEDAW, 15th and 16th article denying formal equality of rules and right among men and women. In other words, Muslims in Europe are trying to redefine their identity outside the realm of Islam (BuChler, 2013, p 100). Conventions and Practices: With change of perspectives and outlooks, social practices are also changing among Islamic families. As in England one can find that marriages are still held through the ‘nikah’ ceremony. It is not recognized by the English court of law. With the changing of perspectives, around two-thirds of Muslim couples are marrying again to enjoy the protection of English legal systems. Also, they are renouncing pluralism of marriages as it is not recognized. They are holding their religious roots on one hand and on the other adopting the newer form. This scenario can be found all over Europe (BuChler, 2013, p 77). ‘Talaq’, another important provision of Islamic family law is “taken into consideration in gender- neutral divorce law and legal practice”. Also, in Europe, no direct legal measures taken against polygamy as because European courts do not hold polygamy as an unlawful act (BuChler, 2013, p 100). Though from time to time social issues have been raised about use of head- covering or hijab, many Muslim women still continue to wear them as a part of their religious convention. Islam: Law Council In European countries, Muslims have their own quasi- judicial institutions. These institutions are basically the shari?ah law councils which impart judgment to large sections of Muslim communities in Europe, as most Muslims in Europe do not recognize the authority and legitimacy of any other legal system. Thus they turn up to these councils mostly with problems regarding family matters. The law councils have a separate code of law and adopt unconventional modes of settling disputes, formulated according to legal norms of Islam. One such country is England where the unofficial yet autonomous shari?ah courts serve millions of Muslims (BuChler, 2013, p 76-77). Durham, Kirkham, & Torfs (2012, p 6) insist that from the view point of European Courts, no discrimination is made between Muslims and non- Muslim subjects, though their ways of resolving or ...Show more


Religion and Theology: Islam in Europe Introduction Ever since Muslim immigrants started entering Europe, Islam has influenced Europe in all aspects. After the Second World War, European citizens saw propagation of a new faith, which, in gradual course of time became the largest minority group…
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Islam in Europe essay example
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