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The Place of Islam in the Geography of Religion: Trends and Intersections

Gale, Richard T. 2007. The Place of Islam in the Geography of Religion: Trends and Intersections. Geography Compass 1 (5) , pp. 1015-1036. 10.1111/j.1749-8198.2007.00054.x

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This article reviews recent geographical research on Islam and Muslim identities. In the wake of the events of 11 September 2001, the forms taken by public debate surrounding Muslim communities and societies have been manifold and not always edifying. In the present political climate, where public attitudes to a particular suite of issues are often as misinformed as they are deeply held, the need for academics to furnish insights born out of robust research is acute. While the responses of academics to debates coalescing around Muslim communities and identities have emanated predominantly from religious studies, sociology and anthropology, geographers, with their attention to the spatial components inherent to the articulation of social identities, are making an increasingly significant contribution to our knowledge in this field. This article reviews this contribution, focusing on four areas in which geographical research on Islam has been most pronounced: Muslim residential segregation and ‘community cohesion’; the relationship between Islamic dress codes and spatial context in the articulation of Muslim gender identities; the contestation of space that has attended the architectural expression of Muslim identity in urban landscapes and the spatial politics embedded in the construction of Muslim identities at simultaneously national and transnational scales. While the predominant focus is therefore geographical, the article also establishes linkages to other writings on the spatiality of Islam where relevant to the specific themes under discussion.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BP Islam. Bahaism. Theosophy, etc
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN: 1749-8198
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2019 09:08

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