chapter  3
16 Pages

Islam

The context
WithRosemary Hancock

This chapter contextualises the 'Islamic' in Islamic environmentalism: providing a brief overview of the origins of Islam and its basic tenets and information about the Muslim communities in the United States and Great Britain, and, examining Islamic activism through the lens of social movement theory. The Islamic religion sprang to life in Mecca, a trading city in the Hejaz region of current-day Saudi Arabia, in the sixth century CE. Muslim environmentalists in the United States and Great Britain operate for the most part within their own communities; their activism is mostly targeted at environmental consciousness raising and encouraging Muslims to adopt more environmentally responsible practices. Many Islamic groups argue that 'Islam is the solution' to almost any social, political, or – as this research shows – environmental issue. Quintan Wiktorowicz defines 'Islamic activism' as 'the mobilization of contention to support Muslim causes'.