• Sidra Ahmed


Secularism, Identity, Universalism, Assimilation


Contemporary Europe is primarily identified as one of the heterogeneities inserted into a multicultural, secular mega state. The transformation of a culturally intact Europe into a multicultural and multiethnic entity began during 19 50s with the immigration of workers and labors, largely from Muslim countries of Africa and Asia, took place. The article specifically inquires about the case of France where the second largest religion is Islam. In France, the word Muslim and Islam often referred to a collective identity which is not limited to the mosque attendance and rituals only, but rather projected as a threat to the secular identity of France. France introduced two ideals of integration, i.e. Universalism and the French model of Secularism 'Laicite' to absorb the immigrants into social and public spheres. The French populist leaders, scholars, and media view Muslim community as a challenge to the secularist ideal because of its reluctance to espouse the secular values. Incidents and law-making specific to the use of Islamic symbols, association of young/ indigenous Muslims with terrorist network like ISIS, involvement of French Muslims in Paris attack and the economic dispossession of Muslim community are the main reasons for Muslims failing integration in secular France.

Author Biography

Sidra Ahmed

Sidra Ahmed is Lecturer at KASBIT and NUML, Karachi. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. from the Department of IR, University of Karachi. Ms. Ahmed has a vast teaching experience at different public and private sector universities. Her area of specialization includes Identity Politics, Religion & Multiculturalism, Nationalism and Social Integration. She also actively writes blogs and articles on topics related to International Relations, Regional Politics, Muslim Identity Crisis and Nationalism. Her email is


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