chapter  7
25 Pages

Activism, moral practice, and religion

WithRosemary Hancock

This chapter examines the theoretical disputes on the place of religion in social movement studies, arguing that religiously-grounded activism is a more complex and nuanced phenomena than most existing theory allows. It then discusses the ways in which political activism and social movements themselves have religious characteristics and develop moral norms. The chapter also examines the difference between contentious and cooperative activism and how the privileging of contentious activism leads us to ignore some kinds of practice, common amongst Muslim environmentalists, that are nonetheless legitimate forms of political action. It demonstrates that, much like the secular environmental movement, Islamic environmentalism contains both types of action and in fact many activists engage in both contentious and cooperative activism. The chapter concludes by demonstrating the ways in which religious practice and political action are synthesised by Muslim environmentalists.