Summary of The Islamic Challenge

Politics and Religion in Western Europe

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The Islamic Challenge book summary
Inclusive, scholarly survey of the political and policy impact of the relationship between Muslims and European countries.


7 Overall

8 Applicability

8 Innovation

6 Style


The increasing presence of Muslims in predominantly Christian Western Europe is an inflammatory emotional and political topic. Concerns about terrorism, and about the ways this guest religion and culture are altering European values, focus on huge perceived threats. But how real are they? Political scientist Jytte Klausen takes a dispassionate, social-science approach to answering this question through first-hand interviews with more than 300 Muslim leaders in six Western European nations. What she found is surprising. She makes the case that Western European nations can control the outcome of this emotional debate, and can defuse seething discontent through social programs and minor changes to restrictive legislation. getAbstract recommends this to people who want one scholar’s overview of the important role of religion in Western Europe. It’s dry reading, but it contains powerful messages that may actually help integrate Europe’s newest wave of immigrants – of course, if that is everyone’s genuine goal.

In this summary, you will learn

  • What major concerns face Europe’s 15 million Muslim inhabitants;
  • What European governments can do to diffuse Muslim discontent; and
  • What the four models for integrating Muslims into Western European society are.


Culture Clash?
Since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the cultural and religious differences between Europe’s Muslims and Christians have become more visible. This is especially true in predominantly Christian Western Europe, where new Muslim immigrants have created their own ...
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About the Author

Danish-born Jytte Klausen is a professor of comparative politics at Boston’s Brandeis University, and the author of several works on social policy, women’s equality and immigration. Her other books include Has Liberalism Failed Women?

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