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A leap of faith

The tendency among ethnic minority Muslim immigrant communities in Europe towards identification with Islam as a marker of identity is discussed in an array of studies, but seldom have they explained sufficiently how the change took place. Islam and Identity Politics among British-Bangladeshis: A Leap of Faith probes the causes of and conditions for the preference of the members of the British-Bangladeshi community for a religion-based identity vis-à-vis ethnicity-based identity, and the influence of Islamists in shaping the discourse. It also examines whether this salience of Muslim identity is a precursor to a new variant of diasporic Islam. Islam and Identity Politics delves into the micro-level dynamics, the internal and external factors and the role of the state and locates these within the broad framework of Muslim identity and Islamism, citizenship and the future of multiculturalism in Europe.

This book seeks to review the state of political issues early in the twenty-first century, when New Labour is in its second term of office. As part of the updating process it became necessary to choose which political issues are important. The book includes the main issues which appear in current Advanced Level Politics syllabuses. In the case of Edexcel, which offers a specific political issues option in its A2 specification, all the specified issues have been included. The book deals with the process of constitutional and political change which are issues in themselves. It also includes material on constitutional reform (incorporating the recent development of human rights in Britain), and devolution. The book includes the global recession and other recent political developments and looks at the important issues in British politics since 1945. It examines the key issues of British politics today: economic policy, the Welfare State, law and order, environment policy, Northern Ireland, issues concerning women, European integration and the European Union, and the impact of the European Union on Britain. The book also deals with the European Union and Britain's relationship to it. Finally, it must be emphasised that Britain's relationship to the European Union is in itself a political issue which has fundamentally changed the party system.

A higher loyalty

This book argues that the current problems over Britain’s membership of the European Union are largely as a result of the absence of quality debates during the 1959–84 period. The situation today is also attributed to members of the political elite subordinating the question of Britain’s future in Europe to short-term, pragmatic, party management or career considerations. A particular and original interpretation of Britain and Europe is advanced, aided by recently discovered evidence. This includes the methods used by the Conservative government to ensure it won the vote following the 1971 parliamentary debate on Britain’s proposed entry into the EEC. It also delves into the motives of the sixty-nine rebel Labour MPs that voted against their own party on EEC membership, and how the British public were largely misled by political leaders in respect of the true aims of the European project. This is a study of a seminal period in Britain’s relationship with Europe. Starting from the British government’s early attempts at EEC membership, and concluding with the year both major political parties accepted Britain’s place in Europe, this book examines decision-making in Britain. As such, it contributes to a greater understanding of British politics. It answers a number of key questions and casts light on the current toxic dilemma on the issue of Europe.

interests of the islands and political authority in Britain can be emphasised still further. Political decisions in Britain influenced affairs in the islands, just as wealth and prestige acquired by Caribbean involvement affected Scotland’s political landscape. The nature of the political relationship between metropolitan authority and colonial sphere was not simply a question of the London government

in Scotland, the Caribbean and the Atlantic world 1750–1820

was signed in 1957 with just six members. EFTA The European Free Trade Association (EFTA) contained seven members: Britain, Portugal, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Austria and Switzerland. It had no political organisation and was therefore no more than a group of countries which agreed to reduce tariffs between them and so increase trade. Britain’s agreements with the Commonwealth countries were preserved. 250 Understanding British and European political issues EFTA reflected the large amount of trade which was carried out among the seven members, but it was never

in Understanding British and European political issues
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5 Beyond the present O ne point that emerges clearly from the preceding discussion on the identity politics of the British-Bangladeshis is the complexity of the subject. The tendency among ethnic minority Muslim immigrant communities in Europe towards identification with Islam as a marker of identity is discussed in an array of studies, but seldom have they explained coherently how the change took place. This study of the preference of the members of the British-Bangladeshi community for a religion-based identity vis-à-vis ethnicity-based identity is an

in Islam and identity politics among British-Bangladeshis

6 Myth and counter-myth in Second World War British politics Andrew Thorpe Conventional wisdoms, narratives, stories and myths are all of central importance to political parties. Parties require more than just organisation and discipline to keep them united. Even the smallest needs some degree of agreement over its worldview and a sense of a common explanation of how it, and the world, came to be where they are. To sustain a large party capable of taking power, however, is a particularly considerable challenge, and requires, among other things, a powerful and

in The art of the possible
The internal factors

3 Identity, Islamism and politics: the internal factors A nalytical and ethnographic studies about the British-Bangladeshi community conducted around the turn of the twentieth century1 and the events described in Chapter 2 demonstrate that a Muslim identity has gained salience among a section of British-Bangladeshis, especially the younger generation. ‘More and more young Bengalis now identify themselves first and foremost as Muslims rather than as Bengali or Bangladeshi,’ concluded Gardner and Shukur in 1994.2 Until the late 1980s, the Bengali ethnic identity

in Islam and identity politics among British-Bangladeshis

11 The cultural politics of gay pornography in 1970s Britain Paul R. Deslandes The 1950s and early 1960s ushered in a flourishing market in homoerotic images in the form of British and imported American physique magazines, ostensibly about the promotion of health and fitness but very clearly geared to queer audiences. In many of the editorial introductions to these new publications, the focus on the admiration of the male physique was readily apparent. John Barrington, one of the more prominent figures in the physique photography movement who began taking (and

in British queer history
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and political discourses.2 The two events of summer 2006 that captivated the Bangladeshi community were the protests against the filming of Brick Lane in the East End of London, and the visit from Bangladesh of Delwar Hossain Saidee, an Islamist leader. These two events came a year after the surprise and highly publicized victory of George Galloway, leader of the Respect Party, representing a constituency in East London inhabited by a large British-Bangladeshi population. Brick Lane is an adaptation of a best-selling novel by an author of Bangladeshi origin and is

in Islam and identity politics among British-Bangladeshis