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Study of Islamic fashion

14 February 2007 - The number of Islamic fashion shows is growing fast, said Professor Annelies Moors of the University of Amsterdam. She recently received an EU subsidy of half a million euro for a study of Islamic fashion in Amsterdam and in other European countries.

According to Moors, many researchers still uncritically assume that fashion and religion are poles apart, whereas it is obvious when looking at people on the streets that Islamic fashion is booming.

The phenomenon cropped up in the 1980s in Turkey, a country with a strong fashion tradition. By now, large fashion shows are held in countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia and Iran.

The research design has not yet been elaborated, but the research will consist mainly of interviews. Perhaps students will also be asked to interview classmates as part of a job placement.

Moors wants to know where Muslims pick up their ideas and how they see the relationship between fashion and religion. That relation is not self-evident to everybody. Some Muslims think their religion has nothing to do with how they dress, while others find religion incompatible with something as frivolous as fashion.

Moors is further interested in comparing Muslim communities in different countries and in the way in which these influence each other. She therefore works with universities in London, Roskilde, Stockholm and Bremen.


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