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Book: Methods for the Study of Religious Change

Chapter: Chapter 9 Fieldwork on Identity: Contested and Politicized Research

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.24444


In Chapter 9 on identity the central methodological question is: how has the fieldworker on religion to deal with (to play seriously) with contested identities (of herself and of the others?). In this chapter three cases are discussed in which fieldworkers entered the politicized field of Western Islam in the Netherlands. The researchers in this chapter demonstrate that in order to understand Western Islam from person to person, one has to make shifts in the traditional insider/outsider positioning, in particular by searching for a (partial) physical or mental inclusion in the cultural spheres of Western Islam.

Chapter Contributors

  • Martijn de Koning ([email protected] - mdkoning) 'Radboud University'
  • Edien Bartels ([email protected]) 'VU University, Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology'
  • DaniĆ«lle Koning ([email protected]) 'Adventist Frontier Missions (project Central Thai of Thailand)'