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Resistance and Marginalisation: Islamophobia and the Political Participation of Young Muslims in Scotland

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Robin Finlay, Professor Peter Hopkins



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Routledge, 2020.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


A growing body of work has examined the different forms of political participation engaged with by young Muslims in a variety of Muslim-minority contexts. However, the factors that shape the political participation of Muslims has been frequently overlooked, with the focus primarily on the varied types of participations. Given that the lived experiences of young Muslims frequently entail distinctive challenges, with a range of discriminations being negotiated, there is a need to examine how such factors shape political participation. In this paper, our focus is primarily on how Islamophobia intersects with, and shapes, the political participations of young Muslims in Scotland. We conceptualise Islamophobia as a form of governmentality and build on existing debates by highlighting how Islamophobic governmentality shapes political participation and how space is central to its operation. We demonstrate that when Islamophobia intersects with political participation, it can discipline and marginalise political agency, but it can also engender political and activist resistance. When it works as a barrier to participation, it is pushing young Muslims into the marginal spaces of society. While political resistance is a process of spatial reorientation, aiming to move young Muslims into more public and visible spaces in order to challenge the marginalisation of Islamophobia.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Finlay R, Hopkins P

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Social and Cultural Geography

Year: 2020

Volume: 21

Issue: 4

Pages: 546-568

Online publication date: 05/02/2019

Acceptance date: 07/12/2018

Date deposited: 29/12/2018

ISSN (print): 1464-9365

ISSN (electronic): 1470-1197

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/14649365.2019.1573436


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