Book Chapter

Collective Mobilizations of European Muslims: An Overview of Muslim Social Movements



Moufahim M (2021) Collective Mobilizations of European Muslims: An Overview of Muslim Social Movements. In: Harris P, Bitonti A, Fleisher CS & Skorkjær Binderkrantz A (eds.) The Palgrave Encyclopedia of Interest Groups, Lobbying and Public Affairs. Palgrave Macmillan.

Muslim Social Movement organizations are involved in diverse issues ranging from women’s education, support for LGBTQ Muslims, legal rights for asylum seekers, and can act as anti-discrimination watchdogs for Muslim communities. Recent years have even seen the emergence of a small number of Islamic political parties in Europe. Although such groups might have been studied a few years ago as social movements organized around ethno-national criteria (see Keaton, 2005), the “Muslim” dimension is currently taking prominence. The combination of Muslim identity with different forms of activism provides a striking example of powerful sources of contemporary identity that may strongly influence forms of mobilizations, organizational affiliations, and practices. This chapter focuses on Muslim social movements; social movements are defined as “collective challenges based on common purposed and social solidarities, in sustained interaction with elites, opponents, and authorities” (Tarrow, 2011, p. 9), and Muslim social movements are broadly understood as revolving around an Islamic identity, ethics, values, and/or culture. There are a number of different definitions and discussions of the conceptual differences between interest groups, advocacy groups, and social movement organizations which are not discussed here (for a detailed discussion of social movements, see Giugni and Grasso, 2019). This chapter starts by explaining the “Muslim” term as used here. This is followed by a discussion of the issue of identity to understanding Muslim social movements and Muslim social movement organizations. The rest of the chapter discusses the different purposes of Muslim social movements and how these movements and organizations can be classified in relationship to Islamic ethics and values.

Collective mobilization; Political participation; Social movement; Muslim Identity

Publication date31/12/2021
Publication date online09/02/2021
ISBN9783030138950; 9783030138950

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Dr Mona Moufahim
Dr Mona Moufahim

Senior Lecturer, Marketing & Retail