Muslim Minorities as Germany’s Past Future: Islam Critics, Holocaust Memory, and Immigrant Integration - A Lecture by Esra Özyürek
- 4:00 pm on Thursday, April 25, 2019
- 5:30 pm on Thursday, April 25, 2019
- Contact Name:
- Elizabeth Amrien
A new cohort of Turkish- and Arab-background public intellectuals in Germany locate the root of problems of migrant communities in a resemblance between Islamic culture and Nazi ideology. Islam critics promote the idea that if, like the children of Nazis before them, children of Muslims can rebel against their fathers and sexually liberate themselves, they will also be able to embrace the democratic values of German society. In their best-seller books, critics of Islam aim to include migrants in the German national temporal framework and also enable a new interpretation of German history not as an anomaly, an evolutionary modernization story gone terribly wrong, but as an historical model that other nationalities should also pass through and come out of. By studying how highly popular critics of Islam position Muslims in relation to the memory of National Socialism in Germany, Esra Özyürek, Associate Professor and Chair for Contemporary Turkish Studies at the European Institute, London School of Economics, asks what kind of transformation (and reproduction) German Holocaust memory and public political culture are undergoing in its perception of its relationship with its Nazi past on the one hand and its multi-ethnic present and future on the other. She also asks what role Muslims and other minorities play in shaping, reacting to, and corresponding with these transformations. By focusing on the unlikely promise of inclusion of the Muslim minority in the German national temporality through path dependent repetition, she argues that national memory cultures are formed in relation to and with the help of minorities who are being simultaneously incorporated and excluded from the present at once.