FREEDOM OF RELIGION FOR MUSLIM IMMIGRANTS The politicisation of religion in 2010s Sweden

University essay from Göteborgs universitet/Statsvetenskapliga institutionen

Abstract: ABSTRACT: Globalization and a rising migration have led to an increasing religious pluralism in Sweden. During the last decade, a large proportion of the migrants have been Muslims, especially immigrants arriving during the European refugee crisis in 2015. Islam, sometimes perceived as an un-European religion, is more visible than traditional SwedishChristianity, and Muslims are using their right to Freedom of religion and are expressing theirfaith publically and collectively. This is leading to new problems in Sweden, being one of the most secular countries in the world, where religion has become a private matter. This increasingly pluralistic religious landscape in Sweden has led to reactions from politicians in the parliament. This thesis investigates the politicization of religion during the period of 2011to 2020 - overlapping the European refugee crisis in 2015 - by examining parliamentary motions on the issue of religion, connecting it to the issue of migration. It uses quantitatively content analysis on parliamentary motions on religion, migration and Freedom of religion, and qualitatively idea analysis in order to analyze the motions on Freedom of religion,differentiating between Freedom from religion and Freedom to religion. The findings show that motions on the issue of religion (especially on Islam), on the issue of religion and migration combined and on Freedom of religion increased during 2011-2020, that the increase in Freedom of religion primarily was due to an increase in Freedom from religion, and that proposals in motions on Freedom of religion was increasing in strength and comprehensiveness.

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