Source of Enlightenment or Safeguard of Christianity
No 23, EUROSPHERE Working Paper Series (EWP) from Eurospheres project
Europe and the West function as categories for self-categorization in connection to the discourses on Islam with global characteristics, thus restraining the relevance of the nation as a factor for collective identification in this specific context. These concepts are not reflected upon – they appear in a naturalized form – and that there are contradictions within them – opposite positions within the same conversational field. This would imply that the concepts in their naturalized form legitimate their own substance. The concepts within the discourses of Islam as the Other are representing the own collective community – what is considered European and Western, representing the Western World and Europe. This study focuses on the questions: what the concordances and contradictions in the rhetoric on these concepts are, how the themes they build upon are legitimized, what perspectives and viewpoints are dominant, what argumentation strategies are used and which authorities are referred to. The material in this work consists of all opinion articles debating the caricatures of Prophet Muhammad from seven Swedish-language dailies in Finland from a six months period in 2006.
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