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Religion, Migration and Identity

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A Conceptual and Theoretical Exploration

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This article aims to give a representative overview and appraisal of insights and theories developed thus far in the field of religion, migration and identity. It investigates whether the present conceptual toolbox is adequate to describe and analyze the impact of migration phenomena on individual and communal expressions of faith. The article first explores the concepts “migrant” and “migration”. It then discusses theories focusing on the significance of faith and religious communities for migrants, followed by theories pertaining to the changes effectuated by migration in the religious landscapes of the country of origin as well as destination. The article argues that there is a need for further clarification and stipulation of key terms in the discourses on religion and migration, as well as a necessity to do more comparative research, since most of the prevailing theories so far have emerged from research on Christian migrant communities in the usa. Finally, it identifies areas for further research.

Affiliations: 1: Utrecht University


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