Friday, 27 February 2009

Convoy to Gaza: Viva Palestina

Official Wire, The Mark Steel Article The Independent Didn't Publish, 27 Feb 09 "No column in The Independent again this morning, as they weren't overly keen on the issue I was writing about, which is connected to the Viva Palestina convoy of trucks, that left London on February 14th to deliver food and medicine to Gaza. " [commentary]

See Viva Palestina

'Britain and its Muslims: How the government lost the plot '

Economist, Britain and its Muslims: How the government lost the plot, 26 Feb 09 "Sarah Joseph, a convert to Islam who edits the glossy monthly Emel, says Muslims are fed up with being asked if they are against violence; they want people to know what they are for, such as social justice. The sad fact, in a country that has come to live in fear of terrorism, is that many Britons are indeed more interested in assessing Muslims’ potential for violence than in anything else about them."

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Campaign: I Am Muslim, I Am British

AFP/Straits Times, Britain runs anti-terror ads, 25 Feb 09 "The 'I Am Muslim, I Am British,' campaign homes in on 15 to 25 year old men in a three-month pilot costing Britain 520,000 pounds. A parallel campaign will also run in Britain and could go global if successful. The point of the campaign is to show that Muslims are integrated into British society and stimulate open debate about extremism."

For more information see:

I Am Muslim, I Am British

Report: Mosques in Britain

Andrew Brown, Guardian, Islam in Britain: not very C of E, 23 Feb 09

"A report out today laments the high numbers of foreign-trained leaders of UK mosques. But is making imams more like vicars the solution?

"The Quilliam Foundation is an interesting body because it hopes to achieve a more Muslim Britain as much as any of the Islamist parties it criticises; but it means to get there by fair means rather than foul. The headline that comes out of its latest report (pdf) is that almost all the imams in British mosques are foreign."

Quilliam Foundation. Report. Anya Hart Dyke, Mosques Made in Britain [click on link on their front page to download the pdf]

This is another report to add to my reading list. I look forward to taking a closer look. The Quilliam Foundation also links to related other pieces by Ed Husain.

Lord Ahmed

BBC News, Peer jailed for motorway texting, 25 Feb 09 "Lord Ahmed will serve half of his sentence in jail and half on licence. He was also banned from driving for a year and ordered to pay £500 prosecution costs."

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Conference: People of the Prophet’s House

People of the Prophet’s House: art, architecture and Shiism in the Islamic world

26-28 March, BP Lecture Theatre, British Museum

"This three-day international conference tries to ascertain what ShiĘża Islam is and whether we can identify art and material culture that is inherently ShiĘżi. Papers cover topics from shrine and mosque architecture and manuscript painting to iconography, ritual and cinema."

Guantanamo

Daily Mail, The 14 men sent back to Britain from Guantanamo, 24 Feb 09

Telegraph, Binyam Mohamed reunited with family, 24 Feb 09

Mosque Survey: England and Wales

Survey: Mosques in England and Wales

BBC News, Survey reveals mosque insights, 23 Feb 09

"The average mosque in England and Wales attracts 400 attendees at Friday prayer meetings, while providing a range of community services, a survey has found."

The report is detailed here:

Charity Commission, Charity Commission publishes first detailed mosque survey

Charity Commission, Survey of mosques in England and Wales (PDF). It's 38 pages. Haven't read it yet.

Islam in Britain: Salam

Islam in Britain

I'm starting a new blog. Essentially it's a series of feeds and links to information relating to Islam and Muslims in Britain. It's part of virtuallyislamic.com. I've had a long-term interest in this subject. Unfortunately, I won't be able to engage in dialogue on these stories, for reasons of time. Earlier feeds in the Virtually Islamic blog on related areas can be found here.

Some of the content of this blog links into the MA Islamic Studies at the University of Wales, Lampeter - specifically the Islam Today module. Details: www.islamic-studies.net. The module page also contains resources on Islam in Britain. Also see Islamic Studies Pathways.

I am working on a new book in this area. I have a related chapter coming out sometime in '09 in Postcolonial Media Culture, Rinella Cere & Ros Brunt (editors), (Palgrave, 2009). Details to follow when I get them.