Contemporary Islam

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 433–454 | Cite as

“Looking at the life of the prophet and how he dealt with all these issues.” Self-positioning, demarcations and belongingness of German salafis from an emic perspective

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Abstract

This article explores self-ascriptions, processes of inclusion and exclusion, and senses of belonging in the everyday lives of German Muslims who orientate themselves towards the Salafiyya. Based on ethnographic fieldwork and in-depth interviews taking place over a year and a half, we draw on two case studies to show how demarcation lines between ‘us’ and ‘others’ can be established within the diverse Salafi communities and Salafi self-positioning in non-Muslim surroundings. The article sheds light on what orientation towards the life of the Prophet and the salaf sālih (the pious ancestors) means for the informants, especially focusing on their negotiations of being Salafiyya-oriented Muslims and citizens of Germany. Looking at their reasoning behind their own standing towards other persons labelling them Salafis, towards non-Salafis and towards possible opponents of Salafism, we provide insight into negotiations of political action, citizenship, identity and belongingness from an emic approach.

Keywords

Salafism Islam in Germany Sense of belonging Madkhaliyya 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Islamic Studies / Department of Cultural and Social AnthropologyUniversity of CologneKölnGermany

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