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“A-typical Muslims: A Discourse of ‘True’ and ‘Tntegrated’ Islam Among Young Italian-Bangladeshis Living in Rome (Italy),” by Andrea Priori, CMS Seminar Series

Wednesday, November 18, 2020 at 4:30pm to 5:45pm

Virtual Event

‘Our parents couldn’t teach us what Islam actually is!’ This assertion, made by a 24-year-old youth, epitomizes the critical stance of second-generation Italian-Bangladeshis towards the religiosity of first-generation migrants. Based on ethnographic research within the Bangladeshi community in Rome, this presentation illustrates the apparently oxymoronic characteristics of a discourse of Muslim-ness which, despite stressing the importance of a return to the primary sources of Islam, combines this revivalist attitude with a peculiar emphasis on ‘integration’, and with modernist positions. In fact, for these youths, the religion practiced by the adults is both ‘impure’, i.e. an Islam too much influenced by the ‘Bangladeshi culture’, and ‘not integrated’ in the European context, i.e. an Islam incapable of offering to the Italian society a modern, and reassuring, image of Muslim people, and consequently unable to cope with a growing Islamophobia. I will show how this counter-intuitive combination is not only inspired by the teachings of Tariq Ramadan, and by his idea of a ‘European Islam’, but first and foremost it is grounded in the concrete life conditions of Muslim youths who are both well-integrated in the Italian society and animated by religious zeal. In this way, I seek to shed light on the mutual entanglement of religious stances and life experiences, and to highlight the limits of what Samuli Schielke calls ‘exceptionalist’ and ‘literalist’ approaches to the study of religion.

Dial-In Information

Registration is required for this virtual event

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Event Type

Seminar

Departments

Near Eastern Studies, Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies, Anthropology, History, Government, Comparative Muslim Societies Program, Cornell Institute for European Studies, South Asia Program

Tags

middleeasterncal

Contact E-Mail

et54@cornell.edu

Contact Name

Eric Tagliacozzo, Program Director

Contact Phone

6072546564

Speaker

Andrea Priori, Research Associate, Anthropology

Speaker Affiliation

Dept. of Social and Cultural Sciences, Fulda University of Applied Sciences (Germany)

Dept. Web Site

http://cmsp.einaudi.cornell.edu/

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Open To

Free and open to the public

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