Recent Scholarship: “Burkinis” in Belgium

In this article from the Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights, Eva Brems, Saïla Ouald Chaib, and Katrijn Vanhees discuss the status of the "burkini" (body covering swimwear) under Belgian law and policy. "'Burkini' Bans in Belgian Municipal Swimming Pools: Banning As a Default Option" Following the French commotion on the presence of “burkini” wearers at … Continue reading Recent Scholarship: “Burkinis” in Belgium

In the News: Islamic Veils in France

Two weeks ago, the UN Human Rights Committee (which oversees compliance with the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights) declared that France’s ban on full-face veils violates freedom of religion. According to the 2010 French law, “No one may, in a public space, wear any article of clothing intended to conceal the face.” … Continue reading In the News: Islamic Veils in France

In the News: Headscarves

Last month, the legal and political debate in Europe over Muslim headscarves was reignited after Denmark began implementing a ban on wearing burqas in public, and former UK foreign minister Boris Johnson said that women who wear burqas look like “letter boxes” and “bank robbers.” In the US, the headscarf has been debated by courts … Continue reading In the News: Headscarves

Comparing the Religion-State Divide in the Arab World: Constitutions

Nathan Brown, Professor of Political Science and International Affairs at the Elliot School of International Affairs at George Washington University, asserts that "Arab constitutions are not abnormally religious," even though they legally integrate religion in different ways. "Religion appears in the constitutions of the Arab world, almost all with Muslim majorities, in a variety of … Continue reading Comparing the Religion-State Divide in the Arab World: Constitutions

Freedom of Religion Under Threat Across Europe After EU Court Rules Employers Can Ban Headscarves

Guest contributor Sara Silvestri examines the latest in the recent developments of the European headscarves debate. This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. Wearing a headscarf to work may become harder in some professions. via www.shutterstock.comSara Silvestri, City, University of London Employers across Europe have been given the green light to … Continue reading Freedom of Religion Under Threat Across Europe After EU Court Rules Employers Can Ban Headscarves

The Ongoing Public Debate on Islam in the Netherlands

Jan Jaap de Ruiter discusses the public debate on Islam and sharīʿa in the Netherlands shortly before the March 15th parliamentary elections. Update from the author, March 20, 2017: The parliamentary elections on March 15th resulted in a modest gain of the populist voice. Though the Netherlands will continue to have a coalition government, the end of the elections … Continue reading The Ongoing Public Debate on Islam in the Netherlands

TRENDING: When is a Texas “poll” about sharīʿa not really a poll and not really about sharīʿa?

Recently in Texas, a state legislator, Representative Kyle Biedermann, sent out what he called a poll to mosques across the state. A copy of the loyalty test-style letter and reform-of-Islam manifesto, called a "poll", is reproduced here. The "poll" was in fact a 7-page series of documents that drew on false notions of select questions of … Continue reading TRENDING: When is a Texas “poll” about sharīʿa not really a poll and not really about sharīʿa?

CASES TO WATCH (UPDATE):: Can a Judge Determine Acceptable Religious Attire in a Quebec, Canada Courtroom?

Guest contributor Jennifer Selby answered this two weeks ago in her earlier post on the Rania El-Alloul case in Quebec. There, she concluded that, "So, for the time being, yes, a Quebecois provincial judge can dictate religious attire in her courtroom. However, we must wait to see how El-Alloul’s case for clarification unfolds to see whether judges will continue to set these … Continue reading CASES TO WATCH (UPDATE):: Can a Judge Determine Acceptable Religious Attire in a Quebec, Canada Courtroom?

CASES TO WATCH: Can a Judge Determine Acceptable Religious Attire in a Canadian Courtroom?

Guest contributor Jennifer Selby uses the recent case of Rania El-Alloul in Quebec, Canada to situate an ongoing debate at the intersection of secularism and religious freedom. Citing her courtroom as a "secular space," Quebec provincial court judge Eliana Marengo dismissed Rania El-Alloul from her courtroom for wearing a hijab. Selby examines the legality of this action by appealing to … Continue reading CASES TO WATCH: Can a Judge Determine Acceptable Religious Attire in a Canadian Courtroom?

A Brief History of the French Burkini Ban

UK/Europe/Southeast Asia editor Rachel Mazzarella chronicles the history of the French burkini ban and its potential efficacy. She weighs the policy options of the European Court of Human Rights and how it may attempt to integrate concepts of public safety, religious freedom, and personal beliefs in a country where recent terrorist attacks may be stressing traditional beliefs … Continue reading A Brief History of the French Burkini Ban