Principles of the Salafi movement in Morocco: local evolution and transnational influence

Al Awwad, Fayyadh Ibrahim Sanad (2022). Principles of the Salafi movement in Morocco: local evolution and transnational influence. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Despite stereotypes of Salafism as being homogenous, and usually framed as an external 'foreign influence', the adaptation of Salafism and its practices to local contexts does occurs, and not solely for pragmatic or instrumental reasons. This thesis explores that adaptation process by examining Moroccan Salafism as a case study. Moroccan Islam has been known for its Sunni characteristics, consisting of the Ash'ari creed and sanctity of Sufism, and yet Salafism still flourished there. This environment, in which Salafism was not expected to emerge or thrive, posed numerous challenges to Salafi-based concepts and the community, necessitating the need to adapt to the local context, responding to socio- political changes, and engage with other Islamic movements.

This thesis analyses the intellectual transformations that the Moroccan Salafi movement has undergone. Additionally, it focuses on how local or transnational factors affect the reshaping of religious discourse and the shifting of reform priorities. The study is based on an analysis of Moroccan Salafism’s literature and other related data such as interviews, seminars and publications.

The study shows that Moroccan Salafism is not as unified as initially presumed, and there are many Salafi variants (both within and beyond Morocco), each with their own understanding of Salafi principles. The study confirms how national and transnational influences have clearly been a significant factor in the development of the genealogy of Moroccan Salafism. Therefore, although Salafi movements adopt the same dogma, they are social movements that develop and transform as their context and circumstances change, making many of their perspectives context-dependent.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Licence: All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion, Department of Theology and Religion
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BP Islam. Bahaism. Theosophy, etc


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