The Potential for Expressing Post-secular Citizenship Through the Deobandi Doctrine

Studies in Philosophy and Education 33 (3):283-302 (2013)
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Abstract

Islamic education has been regarded as a thorn in the side of religious minority community integration into the nation state, and consequently to the expression of citizenship. Expressions of citizenship are associated with public participation while Islamic education is more readily associated with retreat and isolation of religious communities. At the same time the pervasiveness of religion in public life has led to calls for the post-secular—that is where religious communities are present in secular society. Habermas demonstrates that a public which is literary constituted through critical rational communication is an effective means with which individuals can participate in the public sphere of modern society. Literary publics get constituted when three features are satisfied; writing, reading and discussing matters of common interest. The article considers the features of a literary public in relation to a review of some literature on the Deobandi education movement. The article argues that Islamic education at Deobandi institutions is able to constitute a literary public through the use of common texts in vernacular languages which are accessible to individuals who can then read and discuss them. The article suggests, then, that Islamic education within the Deobandi network of institutions opens up fascinating possibilities for expressing of post-secular citizenship requiring further research

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