From "Closed Worlds" to "Open Doors": (Now) Accessing Deobandi darul uloom in Britain

In 2005, I documented my unsuccessful attempts to conduct qualitative research in a particular group of British Islamic seminaries responsible for training future imams and scholars ('ulama). These seminaries or "darul uloom" (in Arabic, "house of knowledge", often abbreviat...

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Bibliographic Details
Published in:Fieldwork in religion
Main Author: Gilliat-Ray, Sophie 1969-
Format: Electronic Article
Language:English
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Published: Equinox [2018]
In:Fieldwork in religion
Year: 2018, Volume: 13, Issue: 2, Pages: 127-150
Standardized Subjects / Keyword chains:B Great Britain / Islam / Ulama / Darul Uloom Deoband
Further subjects:B Muslims
B Darul Uloom
B Reflexivity
B access
B Methodology
B Britain
B Seminary
B Research
Online Access: Volltext (Resolving-System)
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Summary:In 2005, I documented my unsuccessful attempts to conduct qualitative research in a particular group of British Islamic seminaries responsible for training future imams and scholars ('ulama). These seminaries or "darul uloom" (in Arabic, "house of knowledge", often abbreviated "DU") reflect the "Deobandi" tradition due to their origins in the town of Deoband, India, in the nineteenth century. My article, published in the journal Fieldwork in Religion, considered the circumstantial, contextual, and historical factors that might explain why access was apparently impossible for social science researchers, at the time. In this article, twelve years on, I explore why research access is now more possible in at least some Deobandi institutions. These include developmental changes within and outside these seminaries, and aspects of personal and professional biography. My article considers the processual nature of research access, and the need for a felicitous convergence of circumstantial and biographical conditions.
ISSN:1743-0623
Contains:Enthalten in: Fieldwork in religion
Persistent identifiers:DOI: 10.1558/firn.35029