Category: Past Events
Speaker: John Bowen
Date: 7 Sep 2012
Time: 18:45 - 20:30
Venue: Abrar House, 45 Crawford Place, W1H 4LP
In the United States and Europe it has been argued by some politicians, activists and scholars that Islam is incompatible with Western values. Some go as far as asserting that Muslims immigrants cannot successfully integrate into their host countries in the West.
In his latest book, Blaming Islam, John Bowen uncovers common myths about Islam and Muslim integration into Western society. He focuses on the historical narratives, policies and popular rhetoric associated with Muslim immigration in Europe, and the claims of European and American writers that Islam poses a threat to the West. He argues that exaggerated fears about Muslims misread history, misunderstand multiculturalism's aims, and reveal the opportunism of right wing parties who draw populist support by blaming Islam.
John R. Bowen is the Dunbar-Van Cleve Professor in Arts & Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis. He has been studying Islam and society in Indonesia since the late 1970s, and since 2001 has worked in France, England, and North America on problems of pluralism, law, and religion, and in particular on contemporary efforts to rethink Islamic norms and civil law. His most recent book on Asia is Islam, Law and Equality in Indonesia: An Anthropology of Public Reasoning (Cambridge, 2003). His Why the French Don’t Like Headscarves (Princeton, 2007) concerned current debates in France on Islam and laïcité. Can Islam be French? (Princeton, 2009) treated Muslim debates and institutions in France and appeared in French in 2011. Appearing in early 2012 are A New Anthropology of Islam from Cambridge and Blaming Islam from MIT Press. He also writes regularly for The Boston Review. His current two research projects concern sharia and civil law in England, and Islamic courts and property disputes in Indonesia.
Free entrance. All welcome. No reservation needed. Prayer space available. Street parking free from 18:30.