Skip to main content

Reacting to Islam: Islamophobia as a Form of Extremism


For many, Islam today is a cause of deep concern if not fear. While some Islamic extremists clearly pose a danger, often more in respect to other Muslims, in the non-Muslim world there is increasing evidence of a generalized negative reaction. Ignorance and fear combine to foment an Islamophobic rejection of Muslims and all things Islamic. A deep ‘othering’ of Muslims emanates from right-wing and fundamentalist Christian quarters, among others, in many parts of the world. This chapter summarizes the argument that Islamophobia can be regarded as a manifestation of religious extremism and it examines in particular two dramatic instances from the past decade—the 2009 Swiss ban on the building of minarets and the 2011 Norwegian massacre carried out by Anders Behring Breivik.


This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution.

Buying options

USD   24.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as EPUB and PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
Softcover Book
USD   32.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Compact, lightweight edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Purchases are for personal use only

Learn about institutional subscriptions

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to G. Douglas Pratt .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

Copyright information

© 2019 The Author(s)

About this chapter

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this chapter

Pratt, G.D. (2019). Reacting to Islam: Islamophobia as a Form of Extremism. In: Esposito, J., Iner, D. (eds) Islamophobia and Radicalization. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.

Download citation

  • DOI:

  • Published:

  • Publisher Name: Palgrave Macmillan, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-319-95236-9

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-319-95237-6

  • eBook Packages: Social SciencesSocial Sciences (R0)

Publish with us

Policies and ethics