Interrogating Islamic Roads to Conviviality: Ethical and Religious Practices of Tolerance in Relation to Identity among Muslim Minorities in Belgium

01 January 2022 → 31 December 2025
Regional and community funding: Special Research Fund
Research disciplines
  • Humanities
    • Religious ethics
    • Religion and society
  • Social sciences
    • Ethnicity and migration studies
Religion and Diversity Islamic Ethics Muslims in Belgium
Project description

This project examines conviviality as an everyday practice of bridging religious and cultural difference from the perspective of Muslim minorities in Belgium living in the cities of Brussels, Antwerp and Liège. It examines the modalities in which Islamic frames of reference and ethical sensibilities are mobilized by individuals when striving for harmonious convivial living together across religious difference. First, the project compares recent scholarship on conviviality with notions of tolerance in Islamic theological and philosophical writings bearing on Western urban contexts, in order to theorize a notion of Islamic conviviality. Second, the positioning of conviviality in the Islamic discursive tradition is complimented by in-depth anthropological fieldwork. By means of focus group discussions, interviews and ethnography making use of film, this project will empirically investigate how Muslim women and men engage in everyday ethical thought and practice while seeking conviviality. Through analysis, this project will identify obstacles and categories of Muslim experiences of success and failure while seeking convivial living. Analysis of personal narratives expands our insight of the relation between personal ethical and Islamic practices of conviviality and Muslim identity. Doing so, this project offers solid and evidence-based research on highly neglected facets of Muslim life in Europe.