Ethnic differences, islamic consciousness, and muslim social integration in the Philippines

James F. Eder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


This study of the close to 100,000 Muslims of diverse geographical and ethnolinguistic origins inhabiting Palawan Island in the southwest Philippines reveals the locally variable and historically contingent nature of the integration of Muslims with non- Muslims and their interaction with the Philippine state and helps explain why the Islamic resurgence of the 1970s and 1980s took hold in some parts of that nation but not in other parts. Ethnicity and ethnic differences betweenMuslims figure importantly but are only part of the story. Ethnic divisions play out on a broader social field marked by other forms of differences that can pull in opposing directions. It is in the totality of the similarities, differences, and identities that implicate Muslims and non- Muslims alike, that an explanation for the differential appeal of political Islam and the development of Islamic consciousness in the Philippines must be sought. As a greater variety of viewpoints within Islam reaches Palawan Island, they bring new choices for belief and behavior that add points to the grid of identities, upon which Muslims in Palawan position themselves. But whether the choices they make work for or against religious tolerance, social integration and political stability depends upon the varying local histories and social positioning of Muslims as well as non- Muslims in the Philippines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)317-332
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Muslim Minority Affairs
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Anthropology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


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