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Muslim Minorities in the West: Between Fiqh of Minorities and Integration


Taha, Dina (2013). Muslim Minorities in the West: Between Fiqh of Minorities and Integration. Electronic Journal of Islamic and Middle Eastern Law (EJIMEL), 1(1):1-36.

Abstract

Fiqh of minorities is a specific framework/perspective of the general Fiqh that looks with one eye at the objectives and principles of Sharî‘a, and the other eye to consider the reality of Muslim minorities in cases that will, usually, only arise in the situation where Muslims constitute a minority. Fiqh of minority is, arguably, based on the premises that Muslim existence in non-Muslim communities, should promote a civilizational dialogue between the Islamic culture and other cultures. This paper argues that Fiqh of minorities’ scholars attempt to provide legal opinions and solutions for Muslim minorities in the West in order for them to fulfill their role as both good Muslims and good citizens, i.e. positive integration as they define it. The paper asks whether the cultural background of the scholar–Western/non-Western–impacts the nature of these solutions. The paper argues that Fiqh of minorities can provide two types of solutions a long-term one, for a permanent Muslim presence in the West, and a short-term–exceptional–one, for a temporary presence. The first suggests that we are dealing with full citizens and members of the society who happen to be Muslims in religion, while the second assumes that Muslims’ natural and ultimate residence is in a Muslim majority country. Both types of solutions are reflected on the nature of the compromise Fiqh of minorities’ scholars, who in turn are affected by their own cultural backgrounds, provide to solve “the good Muslim, Good citizen equation”–i.e. whether they are perceived as “Western Muslims" or “a Muslim minority in the West".

Abstract

Fiqh of minorities is a specific framework/perspective of the general Fiqh that looks with one eye at the objectives and principles of Sharî‘a, and the other eye to consider the reality of Muslim minorities in cases that will, usually, only arise in the situation where Muslims constitute a minority. Fiqh of minority is, arguably, based on the premises that Muslim existence in non-Muslim communities, should promote a civilizational dialogue between the Islamic culture and other cultures. This paper argues that Fiqh of minorities’ scholars attempt to provide legal opinions and solutions for Muslim minorities in the West in order for them to fulfill their role as both good Muslims and good citizens, i.e. positive integration as they define it. The paper asks whether the cultural background of the scholar–Western/non-Western–impacts the nature of these solutions. The paper argues that Fiqh of minorities can provide two types of solutions a long-term one, for a permanent Muslim presence in the West, and a short-term–exceptional–one, for a temporary presence. The first suggests that we are dealing with full citizens and members of the society who happen to be Muslims in religion, while the second assumes that Muslims’ natural and ultimate residence is in a Muslim majority country. Both types of solutions are reflected on the nature of the compromise Fiqh of minorities’ scholars, who in turn are affected by their own cultural backgrounds, provide to solve “the good Muslim, Good citizen equation”–i.e. whether they are perceived as “Western Muslims" or “a Muslim minority in the West".

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:Journals > Electronic Journal of Islamic and Middle Eastern Law (EJIMEL) > Archive > 1/2013
Journals > Electronic Journal of Islamic and Middle Eastern Law (EJIMEL) > Archive > 1/2013 > Articles
Dewey Decimal Classification:340 Law
Language:English
Date:30 May 2013
Deposited On:17 Apr 2013 06:30
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 16:45
Publisher:The Center for Islamic and Middle Eastern Legal Studies (CIMELS), University of Zurich
ISSN:1664-5707
Free access at:Related URL. An embargo period may apply.
Related URLs:http://www.ejimel.uzh.ch/index.html (Publisher)

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