The pathologisation of Muslims in Europe

Farish Noor“‘No we are not racist. It is just that we need to preserve and protect our German identity and culture, and our Judeo-Christian heritage. The more Turkish Muslims come here, the less we know who and what we are. We cannot allow our identity and culture to be confused like that…’

“The gem quoted above was the comment made by a rather ordinary German at a public debate on Islam and the Rule of Law in Berlin; and just one week after an equally gruelling series of public talks in Amsterdam I could not help but feel as if Europe’s slide to the right is accelerating faster than ever.

“That a public forum on Islam and the rule of law could degenerate into a senseless round of Turk-bashing speaks volumes about the shallowness of public debate in some parts of Europe these days…. What was most alarming, however, was the manner in which a host of complex issues and dilemmas were reduced and pathologised to a single problem: The Muslims and their non-Western culture and belief system.”

Farish A. Noor in the Daily Times, 14 September 2007