Module 4 – Contemporary Debates

Welcome to the fourth and final module of Muslims in Britain: Changes and Challenges Now that we’ve explored the diversity of Muslim communities in Britain, we turn our attention to the challenging issue of representation. With the knowledge that you’ve developed over the past three weeks, we’ll critically evaluate the prevailing images of Muslims in the media and consider the role that the media plays in some of the contemporary debates about Islam in Britain.

We will examine notions of assimilation and integration and investigate Islamaphobia as an organising concept for a collection of xenophobic and anti-Muslim prejudices. In our study of representations, we’ll also drawn on the work of the renowned photographer Peter Sanders. In his work we will see a quest for a new way of portraying the integration of Muslims in Britain and their contributions to British society.

He presents striking images of British Muslims which challenge stereotypes and capture that diversity of experience that we’ve learned about in the earlier stages of this course. I urge you take some time to explore the photographs and make them a part of your reflections on the portrayal of British Muslims in the media.