chapter  14
8 Pages



The key objective of this volume has been to provide a fresh and wide-ranging assessment of the role of Islam in Russia during a historical period when not only Russian but also international attention has been greatly exercised by the political and security implications of Islamic radicalization. Russia has not been alone in seeking to fi nd durable solutions to the integration of Muslims in complex multi-ethnic and multi-confessional societies and in a global context where Islam has increasingly become a powerful form of transnational identity and potentially explosive political opposition. The volume has sought to provide a historically rich account of the discourses and ways of conceptualizing the multiple faces of Islam in Russia, which examines Soviet legacies, the approaches taken by Russian leaders and academics, and which articulate the voices and views of Russian Muslims (Dannreuther). These discourses and approaches towards Islam were then located within general shifts in post-Soviet Russia of understandings and conceptualizations of extremism, nationalism, religion and terrorism (Verkhovsky). The ways in which the political and legal frameworks dealing with these issues have become increasingly arbitrary and repressive was underlined. This led to studying these Russian developments in a broader international context, where Russian discourses and approaches to Islam, and the policy implications of this, were compared to similar, if also critically different, dynamics in other countries, most particularly in France and the United Kingdom (Braginskaia; Hutchings et al ).