Somalis are one of the most chastised Muslim communities in Europe. Depicted in the news as victims of female genital mutilation, perpetrators of gang violence, or more recently, as radical Islamists, Somalis have been cast as a threat to social cohesion, national identity, and security in Britain and beyond. Somali, Muslim, British shifts attention away from these public representations to provide a detailed ethnographic study of Somali Muslim women’s engagements with religion, political discourses, and public culture in the United Kingdom. The book chronicles the aspirations of different generations of Somali women as they respond to publicly charged questions of what it means to be Muslim, Somali, and British. By challenging and reconfiguring the dominant political frameworks in which they are immersed, these women imagine new ways of being in securitized Britain. Giulia Liberatore provides a nuanced account of Islamic piety, arguing that it needs to be understood as one among many forms of striving that individuals pursue throughout their lives. Bringing new perspectives to debates about Islam and multiculturalism in Europe, this book makes an important contribution to the anthropology of religion, subjectivity, and gender.
Table of Contents
List of FiguresAcknowledgmentsNote on Language1. Introduction2. An Ethnography with Somali Women in London3. Memories of Modern Mogadishu4. Tuition Centres and Somali Mosques: Raising Good Daughters in London5. Updating Soomaalinimo: Young Somalis and the Problematization of Culture6. Mosque Hopping: Seeking Islamic Knowledge in London7. Multiculturalism, British Values, and the Muslim Subject8. Imagining an Ideal Husband9. Beyond PreventReferencesIndex
Giulia Liberatore is a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow in Sociology, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies and the Alwaleed Centre, University of Edinburgh, UK.