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Call for Papers: British Muslims and Covid-19: Impacts, Experiences and Responses

8th December 2020      

A free MBRN online symposium

Last date for submission of abstracts: 30th October 2020

Research on Covid-19 has highlighted its disproportionate impact on Black and Asian Minority Ethnic groups (BAME) communities (Public Health England, 2020). However, these studies only offer a limited understanding of the particularity of experiences within the umbrella category BAME. For instance, there is only limited discussion around faith in relation to Covid-19, its impacts and the socio-economic fall-outs of lockdown. This MBRN symposium will redress this gap by taking an intersectional perspective in mapping and analysing the impact of Covid-19 on British Muslim communities. By bringing together practitioners and academics, we will examine how diverse British Muslim communities have experienced the pandemic, how their lives have been impacted during and after lockdown and how they responded.

During the lockdown, we have witnessed unprecedented impacts on British Muslims including the closing of mosques and madrassas, cancellation of Friday congregational prayers, Ramadan in lock-down and a significantly limited Hajj. Muslim faith and community leader have played important roles in translating theological rulings into practical guidance, which have largely been adhered to within Muslim communities. Similarly, children and young Muslims, like all young people have experienced the impact of Covid-19 in relation to their education (Children’s Commissioner, 2020). High levels of socio-economic disadvantage amongst British Muslim households mean that we can expect a disproportionate effect of lockdown and Covid-19 on British Muslims. Home learning during school closure, for instance, brought to the surface as well as enhanced the disparities in access to education for disadvantaged pupils, especially those who are known to be at risk of falling behind such as British Muslim pupils.

By focusing on the experiences of British Muslims, this online symposium will enable us to examine the interplay of ethnicity, religion and deprivation, in negotiating the particular challenges of living through Covid-19. It will explore the diversity of ways in which British Muslims have experienced and responded to Covid-19, and seek to understand its ongoing impacts. Our aim is to suggest answers for the question, “How are diverse British Muslims living through, and responding to the challenges of, Covid-19?”. 

We invite proposals for papers that explore any dimension of Muslim identity / lived experiences in relation to the pandemic, lockdown and subsequent socio-economic implications of Covid-19 in Britain. We hope that the symposium will attract academics and practitioners from a range of epistemological positions and disciplinary standpoints. Possible themes and topics include (but not limited to):

  • the intersections of religion, ethnicity and gender in experiences of and responses to Covid-19
  • inclusion and critical engagement of religion as part of the national response to Covid-19
  • disproportionate impact of Covid-19 on British Muslim communities
  • racism and prejudice (including Islamophobia) linked to Covid-19
  • responses of British Muslim charitable and volunteering organisations
  • responses of British Muslim faith leaders and scholars
  • support for bereaved families
  • Islamic theological perspectives on quarantine
  • impact on lived experiences British Muslim families (home-schooling, multi-generational families)
  • media representations of Muslims in relation to Covid-19
  • counter-terrorism and surveillance during a pandemic
  • the negotiation of cultural, religious and moral values while socially-distancing
  • the role of young people in shaping the British Muslim responses to Covid-19
  • methodological reflections on working with Muslims during the pandemic

To submit a proposal:

  • Please submit a title and abstract of no more than 300 words together with names and short biographies (150 words) of the presenter/s, institutional affiliation/s (if relevant), and contact details.
  • We also welcome proposals from postgraduate researchers, independent scholars and practitioners.
  • Proposals should be sent to MuslimsinBritainRN@gmail.com
  • Academic enquiries should be sent to Dr. Khadijah Elshayyal, khadijah@iga-cis.org
  • Deadline: 5pm on Friday 30th October 2020
  • Successful presenters will be notified by Friday 6th November 2020

Registration

  • This is a free event, further details about the registration process will be circulated and posted on the MBRN website soon

Conference Organisers

Dr Sariya Cheruvallil-Contractor (Chair), Dr Khadijah Elshayyal (General Secretary), Dr Sufyan Dogra, Sadiya Ahmed, Dr Jawiria Naseem and Dr Asma Khan (Committee Members)

MBRN Executive Committee

https://www.mbrn.org.uk/committee/ Twitter: @MuslimsInBritRN; www.facebook.com/muslimsinbritainresearchnetwork/