For many in the West, Islam has become a byword for terrorism. From 9/11 to the Paris attacks, our headlines are dominated by images of violence and extremism. Now, as the Western world struggles to cope with the refugee crisis, there is a growing obsession with the issue of Muslim integration. Those Muslims who fail to assimilate are branded the `enemy within', with their communities said to provide a fertile breeding ground for jihadists. Such narratives, though, fail to take into account the actual lives of most Muslims living in the West, fixating instead on a minority of violent extremists.
In The Daily Lives of Muslims, Nilufer Goele provides an urgently needed corrective to this distorted image of Islam. Engaging with Muslim communities in twenty-one cities across Europe where controversies over integration have arisen - from the banning of the veil in France to debates surrounding sharia law in the UK - the book brings the voices of this neglected majority into the debate. In doing so, Goele uncovers a sincere desire among many Muslims to participate in the public sphere, a desire which is too often stifled by Western insecurity and attempts to suppress the outward signs of religious difference.
Nilufer Goele is a professor of sociology at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris. Her previous books in English include Islam in Europe: The Lure of Fundamentalism and the Allure of Cosmopolitanism (2010) and Islam and Secularity: The Future of Europe's Public Sphere (2015).
Preface Introduction: European-Muslims - From Collage to Interweaving 1. Europe: No Entry for Islam? 2. Ordinary Muslims 3. Controversies Surrounding Muslim Prayer 4. Mute Minarets, Transparent Mosques 5. Art, Sacredness and Violence 6. Veiling and Active Minorities 7. What about Sharia? 8. Halal Lifestyles 9. Jewish Cursor Conclusion: European Muslims Taking to the Stage