Neo-Islamophobia: A New Western Social Order
AbstractAbstract Views: 230
Traditionally, the term Islamophobia refers to prejudice, racism, and/or securitization which implies that this phenomenon operates at cognitive, cultural, or structural levels. The current researchers anticipate that the term now represents an Islamophobic social order in the West where hatred for Islam and everything related to it appears to be the collective behaviour of the society. This points to a new social reality that goes beyond the psychological problem, now referred to as Islamophobia. Therefore, the researchers have added the prefix "neo" to this term in order to account for Islamophobia's psychosocial nature which manifests itself in discourses and practices. The purpose of this research is to study Islamophobic discourses in the media of two Western societies in order to better understand the nature of Islamophobia in each: the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (USA). It studies leading articles (that is, 446 in toto) from The Independent and The Washington Post between November 2016 and December 2017, using DHA's analytical framework. This study concludes that traditional "Islamophobia" dominates in the UK context, where Islam is perceived as a threat to Europe's symbolic identity and "Neo-Islamophobia" in the US context, where Islam is seen as a threat to the socio-political order. It also proposes a cyclical process of neo-Islamophobia, beginning with problematizing Islam, and progressing to “otherizing,” racializing, and finally securitizing Muslims. The researchers, however, recommend similar studies in other contexts too.
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