Contextualising Islam in Britian – Executive Summary

Report of a series of five symposia organised by the Centre of Islamic Studies, supported by the Department of Communities and Local Government, in association with the Universities of Exeter and Westminster.

Download Contextualising Islam in Britain II – Executive Summary here.

The discussions reported here represent a significant development of the Contextualising Islam in Britain Project. The first stage of this project, Exploratory Perspectives, published in 2009, was the culmination of a series of intensive symposia. These created an independent and open space for a group of scholars, activists, and community leaders with a diverse spectrum of views from across Britain’s Muslim communities to come together to debate a question of pressing topical importance: what does it mean to live faithfully as a Muslim in Britain today?

The conclusions of the first stage of the project implied or explicitly identified where further work or discussion was needed. The aim of the second stage reported in these pages is therefore to address important new topics or to take further those topics which participants judged to be in need of further discussion.

One particular priority in the evolution of the project was to go further in considering one of the key questions identified in the first stage: how might Islamic theologies and Muslim communities contribute to notions of active citizenship and positive engagement in wider society for the common good? The discussions encompassed other (in some cases, contentious) issues of pressing importance for Muslim communities within contemporary British society, including the relationship between the individual and the community, education, gender equality and justice, and sexuality.

Read an article by Tehmina Kazi: A fresh look at Muslims and secularism in the UK