Engaging with debates about lived religion, pluralism, and secularism, this book presents an ethnographic study of committed young Muslims and Christians in the predominantly secular context of the Netherlands. Daan Beekers breaks with conventional frameworks that keep these groups apart by highlighting the common ground between revivalist-minded Protestant Christians and Sunni Muslims.
Based on in-depth fieldwork, Young Muslims and Christians in a Secular Europe shows that these young adults embark on reflexive projects of cultivating personal faith that are rife with struggles, setbacks, and doubts. Beekers argues that this shared precarious condition of everyday religious pursuits is shaped by young believers’ active participation in today’s high capitalist and largely secular society where they encounter other modes of imagining and
living in the world. Yet he reveals that this close engagement with secular culture also fosters a reinvigorated religious commitment that demands constant care and nourishment.
Written in a clear and accessible style, this book reaches beyond longstanding divisions in the study of religion in Europe. It both provides rich insights into everyday religious lives and disrupts persistent binary oppositions between categories such as minorities and majorities, migrants and natives, and Islam and the West.
In this rich comparative ethnography, Daan Beekers explores how the pious pursuits of both young revivalist Christians and Muslims in the Netherlands become entangled with and fuelled by secular and capitalist dynamics. This nuanced account offers a compelling intervention into contemporary debates on religion and secularism in Europe and makes a strong case for the value of comparative analysis within the anthropology of religion. * Giulia Liberatore, University of Edinburgh, UK * Few books approach recent developments in Christianity and Islam in a rigorous comparative manner-this is one. Daan Beekers convincingly shows that many Dutch religious-minded young people share very similar concerns and pathways. * John Bowen, Professor of Anthropology, Washington University in St. Louis, USA * Challenging well-trodden fault lines that imagine Muslims and Christians as separate, Daan Beekers clears a conceptual space for the comparative study of religious plurality. An incisive intervention in the study of religion and society in Europe! * Birgit Meyer, Professor of Religious Studies, Utrecht University, Netherlands * Beekers's book is well argued and thought through. The themes he explores such as lived religion and the everyday, consumerism and capitalism in relation to religiosity, authenticity and sincerity as well as the comparative approach make the book important reading for academics and students of various disciplines who study religion and religiosity, secularism, and capitalism in Europe. * Journal of Contemporary Religion *