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Muslims in Scotland

The Making of Community in a Post-9/11 World

Stefano Bonino

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Explores what it means to be a Muslim in modern Scotland

The experience of being a Muslim in Scotland today is shaped by the global and national post-9/11 shift in public attitudes towards Muslims, and is infused by the particular social, cultural and political Scottish ways of dealing with minorities, diversity and integration. This book explores the settlement and development of Muslim communities in Scotland, highlighting the ongoing changes in their structure and the move towards a Scottish experience of being Muslim. This experience combines a sense of civic and social belonging to Scotland with a strong religious and ideological commitment to Islam.

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List of Tables and Figures
List of Abbreviations
1 Muslims in Scotland: Migration, Settlement and Development
2 Surviving the Crisis and Resisting the Stigma: The Post-9/11 Emergence of a Muslim Consciousness
3 Post-ethnic Scottish Muslim Identities at the Nexus of Nation and Religion
4 The New Muslim Community: Children of Islam and Scotland
5 Integrated yet Discriminated Against: The Ghost of 9/11 in Everyday Muslim Life
6 Discriminated Against yet Integrated: Muslim Resilience and Scottish Engagement with Diversity
Epilogue: Towards a Scottish Communitarianism, where Diversity and Human Universals Meet

About the Author

Stefano Bonino is Lecturer in Sociology and Criminology at the University of Birmingham and Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. He has published academic articles on various aspects of Muslim life in Great Britain in Political Studies Review, Contemporary Islam, Scottish Affairs, Patterns of Prejudice and Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs.


'Muslims in Scotland looks beyond the statistics and sensationalism to offer us a deeper understanding of the individual lives of Muslims, as well as their contribution to Scottish society. Bonino’s book paints a clear narrative of the lives of Scottish Muslims – from the first records to the current headlines. Despite offering an in depth and academic insight into Islamic integration both pre and post 9/11, the book itself is easy read and peppered with individual accounts and everyday experiences.'

- Lesley Warren, CRER (Coalition for Racial Equality and Rights)

'A valuable addition to the corpus of works on Islam in Britain and the West, and will be a useful guide for a wide variety of readers.'

- Abdullah Drury, University of Waikato, The Muslim World Book Review
'[Stefano Bonino] makes some important points that practitioners, scholars and the public alike would do well to heed. Foremost amongst these is the understanding of the diverse national, religious and cultural backgrounds of Muslims in the UK; whilst recognising that the core beliefs, interests and experiences shared amongst Muslims does create a cohesive shared community. This nuanced account, with its care for language and recognition of diversity, should resonate with practitioners interested in, for example, countering violent extremism...There is much to engross and engage a diverse readership...I am confident that Muslims in Scotland will make both a lasting impression on those who read it, and in the various academic disciplines to which its important findings speak.'
- Colin Atkinson, University of the West of Scotland, Journal of Policing, Intelligence and Counter Terrorism
'With the unfolding Brexit, the situation of Muslims in the strongly pro-European Scotland will be particularly interesting to follow. Bonino’s book is not only a very good introductory text to processes within Muslim communities in Scotland but also an important supplementary reading to the existing literature on Islam in Britain and wider Europe. Without these types of books, it is impossible today to understand superdiverse European societies and the important role played in them by Muslim European citizens.'
- Konrad Pędziwiatr, Cracow University of Economics, Journal of Religion in Europe

'This up-to-date analysis rests on a historical and demographic foundation. Its account of the Muslims of Scotland and their experiences, often so different from the rest of the UK, is a welcome addition to the literature on Muslims in Europe.'

- Professor Jørgen S. Nielsen, University of Birmingham

'This is an important, fresh and pioneering study of the Muslim community in Scotland. It should be required reading for policy makers and academics as well as all those interested in the changing social shape of Scotland today.'

- Professor Sir Tom Devine, University of Edinburgh

Muslims in Scotland highlights the distinctive features of both Scottish identity and Scotland's Muslim communities, demonstrating the relatively benign relationship between the two, in contrast to the situation in some other parts of the UK and Europe.’

- Professor Hugh Goddard, University of Edinburgh

'In a world riven by ethnic and religious conflict, Stefano Bonino’s Muslims in Scotland gives us a convincing, fascinating, and inspiring example of how an indigenous society can live in harmony with immigrant communities. It should be compulsory reading for those concerned about the future of our world.'

- Professor Akbar Ahmed, American University (Washington, DC) and formerly Pakistan’s High Commissioner to the United Kingdom

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