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British Islam and English Law

This project aims to place the fraught relationship between English civil law and British Islam on a more principled and practical footing. The theoretical aspect of the research analyses the two most influential models for regulating religion – liberal individualism and multiculturalism – and finds them wanting in important ways across various sectors affected by the growth of Islam. It argues for an alternative regulatory model, liberal pluralism, which focuses upon the protection of institutions and is better able to address unofficial normative systems generated by Islam and associational activity more generally within civil society. The applied side of the project examines multiple (non-criminal) fields of English law – family, charity, education, finance, representation, welfare, prison management and immigration – in order to identify problems and design workable reforms with a view to reducing tensions and easing integration.

The project is conducted by Dr Patrick Nash, Research Fellow at the Woolf Institute, and he is working on the book, British Islam and English Law, for the 'Law in Context' Series (Cambridge University Press).

Talks and Presentations

8 November 2018. 'Regulating Islam: Strategic Review of English Civil Law' (Woolf Institute Research Day)


27 November 2018: How, if at all, should a national legal system adapt to religious pluralism in relation to marriage?