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Title: The secular and the religious in the management of Islam in Singapore
Authors: Mohamed Nawab Mohamed Osman
Keywords: Social sciences::Political science
Issue Date: 2018
Source: Mohamed Nawab Mohamed Osman. (2018). The secular and the religious in the management of Islam in Singapore. Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs, 38(2), 246-262. doi:10.1080/13602004.2018.1466486
Journal: Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs
Abstract: This article examines the Singaporean model of “secularism” and its impact on the relations between the Singaporean government and the minority Muslim community in Singapore. While the Singaporean state defines itself as secular, its policies do not depict a strict dichotomy between religion and state. This paper argues that the obscure nature of secularism in Singapore has led to tensions on several issues between the government and Muslim community due to differing perceptions of what Singaporean secularism means. The first section of the paper deals with the concept of secularism as defined by the Singaporean state and examine the historical factors that led to the provision of special rights to Muslims in Singapore. The paper will then analyse the legal positions of institutions such as the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Majlis Ugama Islam Singapura, MUIS) and the Syariah court which are tasked with managing Islamic affairs in Singapore. Lastly, the paper will analyse how the unique definition of secularism in Singapore led to tensions between the government and the Muslim community. These cases included the headscarf controversy that erupted in 2002 and 2013, the madrasah controversy in 1999, foreign policy issues and terrorism. The paper concludes by drawing a trajectory of the future relations between the Singaporean government and the Muslim community.
ISSN: 1360-2004
DOI: 10.1080/13602004.2018.1466486
Rights: © 2018 Institute of Muslim Minority Affairs. All rights reserved.
Fulltext Permission: none
Fulltext Availability: No Fulltext
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