Following the hideous scenes in Woolwich yesterday, I was invited to write a piece for a new independent news and commentary site, The Conversation.
The Conversation is an independent source of news and views, sourced from the academic and research community and delivered direct to the public. To find out more, click here.
I’ve reproduced part of the article below. If you want to read it in full, you can do so here.
EDL uses an old playbook to spread message of hate
It was unsurprising that little more than a few hours after yesterday’s horrific murder, the far-right arrived in Woolwich. Emboldened by the afternoon’s events, the English Defence League’s (EDL) leader Tommy Robinson announced:
“They’re chopping our soldiers’ heads off. This is Islam. That’s what we’ve seen today … Islam is a religion of peace. It’s not. It never has been. What you saw today is Islam. Everyone’s had enough.”
At about the same time, arrests were being made in Essex and Kent following attacks on two different mosques. Similarly, there was a sharp increase in the number of incidents being reported to the government-funded service, Tell MAMA (Measuring Anti-Muslim Attacks).
Before yesterday’s events, indicative data made available by Tell MAMA suggests that more than half of all recorded anti-Muslim incidents are perceived by victims as being perpetrated by people active within, or sympathetic to, various far-right groups and organisations.
Continue reading here.
A quick post to announce the publication of my new article, “Passing the Dinner Table Test Retrospective and Prospective Approaches to Tackling Islamophobia in Britain”. As it is ‘open access’, despite being published in a peer reviewed academic journal – SAGE Open – you can still download a pdf of the article for free. To do so, click here.
If you want to know what the article is about before downloading, I’ve pasted the abstract below:
“Through establishing the All Party Parliamentary Group on Islamophobia and Cross-Government Working Group on Anti-Muslim Hatred, the Coalition government has afforded significance to Islamophobia. Focusing on definition, evidence, and politics, this article considers British governmental policy approaches to tackling Islamophobia over the past 15 years. Tracing religiously based discrimination from the 1980s to the publication of the Runnymede Trust’s 1997 groundbreaking report into Islamophobia, this article explores how the New Labour government sought primarily to address Islamophobia through a broadening of the equalities framework. Against a backdrop of 9/11 and 7/7, a concurrent security and anti-terror agenda had detrimental impacts. Under the Coalition, there has been a marked change. Considering recent developments and initiatives, the Coalition has seemingly rejected Islamophobia as an issue of equalities preferring approaches more akin to tackling Anti-Semitism. In conclusion, definition, evidence, and politics are revisited to offer a prospective for future British governmental policy.”