The questions of how western European states have related, and should relate, to their Muslim populations have in recent decades generated a rapidly growing body of research, aimed at answering the above questions from different theoretical perspectives. It has been argued that the main problem with the existing theories is their failure to take into account historically evolved church–state relations that have a bearing on the way that Muslim religious practices are accommodated in a given country. In order to test this argument, we will examine the representational structures of Muslims in Finland and the Republic of Ireland as well as questions pertaining to Islam and education. Even if under different legal arrangements of church–state relations, both Finland and Ireland have opted for a policy where they aim at securing the status quo of a dominant national church while also extending some of the legal privileges enjoyed by the mainstream church to religious minorities. What we will demonstrate in our article is that while this kind of “policy of extended privileges” can work for, it can also function against securing the rights of religious minorities such as Muslims.
FerrariSilvio, “Islam and the Western European Model of Church and State Relations,” in ShahidW.A.R. & KoningsveldP.S. (eds.), Religious Freedom and the Neutrality of the State: The Position of Islam in the European Union (Leuven, Paris & Sterling: Peeters, 2002), 6–19.
JeldtoftNadia and NielsenJørgen, “Introduction: Methods and contexts in the study of Muslim minorities”, in JeldtoftNadia and NielsenJørgen (eds), Methods and Contexts in the Study of Muslim Minorities. Visible and Invisible Muslims (Abingdon: Routledge, 2012), 1–8.
——— “Multilevel and Pluricentric Network Governance of Religion”, in MartikainenTuomas & GauthierFrançois (eds.), Religion in the Neoliberal Age: Political Economy and Modes of Governance (Ashgate: Farnham, 2013), 129–142.
MohrIrka,“Islamic instruction in Germany and Austria. A comparison of principles derived from religious thought,” Cahiers d’études sur la Méditerranée orientale et le monde turco-iranien33 (2002), 149–166.
OnniselkäSuaad, “Islamin opetus koulussa,” in MartikainenTuomas and Sakaranaho (toim.)Tuula, Mitä muslimit tarkoittavat? Keskustelua islamilaisista virtauksista Suomessa ja Euroopassa (Turku: Savukeidas, 2011), 122−138.
——— “Kohti moniuskontoista Suomea? Vähemmistönäkökulma uuteen uskonnonvapauslakiin,” in Visala (toim.)Aku, Kirkko ja usko tämän päivän Suomessa (Helsinki: Suomalaisen Teologisen Kirjallisuusseura, 2007), 124–145.
——— “The Governance of Islam in the Republic of Ireland: Freedom of religion and the right to Islamic education,” in ScharbrodtOliver, SakaranahoTuula, Hussain KhanAdil, IbrahimVivian and ShanneikYafa, Muslims in Ireland: Past and Present (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, forthcoming in 2015).
——— “The Governance of Islamic Religious Education in Finland: Promoting ‘General Islam’ and the Unity of all Muslims,” in MartikainenTuomas, MaprilJosé& KhanAdil (eds.), Muslims at the Margins of Europe: Finland, Greece, Ireland and Portugal (manuscript).
ScharbrodtOliver, “Introduction”, in ScharbrodtOliver, SakaranahoTuula, Hussain KhanAdil, IbrahimVivian and ShanneikYafa, Muslims in Ireland: Past and Present (Edinburgh: Edinburg University Press, forthcoming in 2015).
ScharbrodtOliver, “Conclusion: Being Irish, being Muslim,” in ScharbrodtOliver, SakaranahoTuula, Hussain KhanAdil, IbrahimVivian and ShanneikYafa, Muslims in Ireland: Past and Present (Edinburgh: Edinburg University Press, forthcoming in 2015).
Montgomery, “Ireland,”291. It is estimated that there are around 3,000–4,000 Shi’a living in Ireland. In similar fashion to the Sunni community, the centre of Shi’a activity in Dublin was also initiated by medical students in the Royal College of Surgeons, many of whom settled down in Ireland and married. In the middle of the 1990s, the Shi’a community constructed, using their own resources, a centre in Milltown, which was officially opened in September 1996. This Ahlul Bayt Islamic Centre, usually known as Hussiania, aims to serve the socio-cultural and religious needs of the Shi’a community in Ireland. See Sakaranaho, Religious freedom, 286–291; Oliver Scharbrodt, “Shaping the Public Image of Islam: The Shiis of Ireland as ‘Moderate’ Muslims,” Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs 31/4 (2011), 518–533.
See Thomas S. Popkewitz, “The production of reason and power: curriculum history and intellectual traditions,”Journal of Curriculum Studies29/2 (1997), 139–144; see also Inkeri Rissanen, “Teaching Islamic education in Finnish schools: A field of negotiations,” Teaching and Teacher Education 28 (2012), 740−749.
See Stefano Allievi, “How the Immigrant has Become Muslim. Public debates on Islam in Europe,”Revue europèenne des migrations internationals21/2 (2005), 2–23; http://remi.revues.org/2497 (accessed 7 May 2014).