The interchange between Muslims and Europe has a long and complicated history, dating back to before the idea of ‘Europe’ was born, and the earliest years of Islam. There has been a Muslim presence on the European continent before, but never has it been so significant, particularly in Western Europe. With more Muslims in Europe than in many countries of the Muslim world, they have found themselves in the position of challenging what it means to be a European in a secular society of the 21st century. At the same time, the European context has caused many Muslims to re-think what is essential to them in religious terms in their new reality.
In this work, H.A. Hellyer analyses the prospects for a European future where pluralism is accepted within unified societies, and the presence of a Muslim community that is of Europe, not simply in it. He draws upon his academic expertise in a variety of disciplines, including sociology, politics and religious studies, in order to give the reader a thorough theoretical backdrop. Uniquely, he combines this knowledge with his background as an independent scholar engaged in policy networks and institutions. The result is a work that has drawn critical acclaim from some of the most noted scholars in the West on a very important topic.
This is the first of a series of events that will be held on the themes of Dr Hellyer’s book in 2009/10 in Europe, North America, the Middle East and Southeast Asia. Pluralism is certainly one of the key issues facing us today, and Dr Hellyer’s book is a fresh perspective on an age-old topic. See more on the book and author at www.hahellyer.com
“[Dr Hellyer] draws on theory but is focused on real-world problems and the book is informed by his good sense and a search for the middle ground.”Tariq Modood, University of Bristol
“I can think of few books that are more timely and important. H. A. Hellyer’s Muslims of Europe: The ‘Other’ Europeans is must reading for scholars, students and policymakers.”John Esposito, Georgetown University
“I am impressed, indeed astounded, by the comprehensiveness of Dr Hellyer’s remarkable book. It deals with the history of Islam, particularly in Europe, has total familiarity with issues of Muslim theology, deals thoroughly with the questions of discrimination, and, by extension, the so-called “clash of civilisations” thesis.”John Rex, University of Warwick