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Secular normativity and the religification of Muslims in Swedish public schooling
Södertörn University, School of Historical and Contemporary Studies, Study of Religions.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9865-1869
2017 (English)In: Oxford Review of Education, ISSN 0305-4985, E-ISSN 1465-3915Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

This article suggests that the secular norms which influence much of the Swedish school system silence the voices and experiences of young Muslims who also attend Islamic supplementary education. It is based on interviews with 20 Muslim students in Sweden who reflected on their experiences of attending supplementary Islamic education in parallel to their secular schooling. Despite the variety of Islamic education reported by the students, they all held in common that they had learned to read and memorise the Quran as part of their Islamic education. A majority of the students reported that they avoid mentioning their Islamic education classes and their memorisation skills in secular schools since the reaction of teachers has proved to be negative. Those who mentioned that they attended supplementary religious education classes were immediately classified as ‘too religious’, a category that most wanted to avoid. The article shows that to memorise a sacred text stands in stark contrast to much of the educational ideals that prevail in Swedish modern schooling, where a discourse of secular normativity prevails. By using an identity economics model I show that what is perceived as prestigious and rewarding in the Muslim context risks being turned into a cost in the setting of a secular school.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
Keyword [en]
Islamic education; Quran education; Sweden; identity economics
National Category
Religious Studies Educational Sciences
Research subject
Historical Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-33115DOI: 10.1080/03054985.2017.1352349Local ID: 958/3.1.1/2014OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-33115DiVA: diva2:1133419
Projects
Experiences of Islamic and secular education in Sweden and Britain
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2014-6423
Available from: 2017-08-15 Created: 2017-08-15 Last updated: 2017-08-21Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf