Accepted Paper:

"It has always to do with the veil...": experiences with discrimination and racism of muslim women from the Islamic Centre Munich  

Author:

Manuela Ballmann (University of Munich)

Paper short abstract:

The aim of my research is to find answers of the questions wether islamic women are victims of racism and discriminiation. I discuss personal impressions of the women with developments in the german society, who are impressed of the theories of „European Islam“, parallel society and Islamophobia.

Paper long abstract:

The veil is a central symbol for muslim women and muslim communities in Western Europe. In my fieldwork I was in contact with muslim women who attend the Islamic Centre Munich. Some of them where converted to the islam in the last years, after they married a muslim man. The Islamic Centre Munich is one of the oldest mosques and most discussed islamic centre in Germany.

The aim of the research is to find answers of the questions wether islamic women are victims of (cultural) racism and discriminiation. I discuss personal impressions of the women with developments in the german society, who are impressed of the theories of "European Islam", parallel society of migrants and Islamophobia.

Important is the reality, that muslim women are always visible in the public sphere, when the wear the veil. Because of this situation the are often constructed as "the others" in the society, the ones who have to be integrated and who have to learn the German "High-Culture". There are also discriminations from the state, as veiled women are e.g. not allowed to work in schools, when they wear a veil.

Panel W098
Islam within and across religiously diverse communities: case studies from Muslims in the Balkans and Europe