Religion in companies: from the freedom to practice to the recognition of the religious factor in risk prevention

RiskWhile the religious issue has long been considered as declining, if not outdated, one can but observe that this issue remains both a vivid subject of debate – one can find examples in the various “veil affairs” that occurred in France from 1989 to the last 2010 French law – and a fact one would be imprudent to disregard. In his book God and the Company (Dieu et l'Entreprise) Inthis respect, Patrick Banon evokes quite high figures: in 2005, a survey led by the Wall Street Journal asserted that 75% of westernized Europeans considered themselves to be believers... while clearly signaling the difference between beliefs and practices. Thus, in the same survey, it has appeared that while 86% of Italians consider themselves to be Catholics, only 39% concede “practicing”  their religion.

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Prof. Liogier: upcoming conferences and publications


Prof. Raphael LIOGIER will deliver several a speeche next Saturday, December 11, 2010. Information provided below :




Ecole Normale Supérieure - Conférences du Club Montaigne


Prof. Liogier will deliver a speech at the Ecole Normale Supérieure on Saturday, December 11, 2010, 3 pm. Its title will be "La Laicité, c'est une question de goût !" ("Laicité, a question of taste")

Download conference abstract

École normale supérieure - 45, rue d'Ulm - F-75230 Paris cedex 05


A list of recent Prof. Liogier's publications follows.

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Sufism in Pakistan at the ideological crossroads

maulvis1Since its inception, Pakistan, created in 1947 in the name of Islam, has been an arena of heated competition over the "assets of salvation" (Max Weber). Sufism, as the contested "mystical" aspect of faith, has naturally become part and parcel of the ideologisation of Islam and hence of the language of Muslim symbolic politics. From the days of the great reformist Mohammed Iqbal[1], who reinterpreted Sufism in a more dynamic idiom witn a view to empowering the new Muslim community, to the latest somewhat frantic political endeavours of the National Sufi Council, Sufism in Pakistan has strongly emerged as a relevant symbol in analyzing the never ending ideological debate on the identity of a country caught in the murderous crossfire of controversial political contexts.

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Behind the Veil, In the Ranks of the Tablighi Jamaat

Wealthy participants at a women taalim (Tabligh meeting), Sri Petaling, suburb of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, August 2009.Tablighi Jamaat is the greatest missionary Islamic movement in the world. I have spent months with Tablighi women in Asia (Malaysia , Cambodia , South of Thailand, India) among the muqîm, permanent residents in the markaz (Tablighi center). As I was sharing their life, night and day, participating in the taalim (women teaching sessions) witnessing their intimacy and their involvement in the mission, and wearing the purdah (garment covering face and body) myself, I have made personal experiences from inside. I have gained some insight which can provide other reasons, not conscious, for these women to choose a restricted life under the purdah, the radical segregation between female and male. This paper presents an unusual interpretation of the largely unconscious behaviour of women on the path of Allah.

Noor, a strong Tablighi woman in her fifties, dressed all in black, likes to say: "The best place for a woman to stay is between the four walls of her home."  Indeed, in the Tablighi Jamaat, women are not encouraged to go outside.  Even for praying, it is preferred that women stay at home, while men are urged to pray in the mosque.

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What Doctor Edward and Mr. Said said, Thirty Years On from Orientalism


If an assessment on my part of Said’s contribution via Orientalism were to be solely proportioned to the immense admiration I have always had for him as a reader, whiter shades of gray and critical remarks would no doubt have to be relegated to a footnote in small print. Such an assessment would indeed be spontaneously devoted to expressing debt and admiration and enumerating all the reasons which made Said the pioneer he remains thirty years on, for the vast majority of us.

It might also be salutary to devote a page or so to stripping down the arguments of “Occidentalism” which I have never personally been able to make mine, whether emanating from the vicinity of Bernard Lewis (who without much provision for nuance accused him of having “polluted the word orientalism”[1]), or from other Arab[2] or European colleagues, who have also taken him to task, in constructing his object “the Occident”, for succumbing to the essentialist bent he himself so aptly denounced among the orientalists.


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Research Paper Abstract

Crossover trends between Esthetic Diversity in Belief and Dogmatic uniformity in Believing, as currently observable in New Religious Movements.

New Religious Movements are often presented, in the advanced industrial countries, as an expression of the deregulation of belief systems, or as an atomisation of values. The existing movements are thus deemed to be widely diffused, highly diversified, waxing and waning according to prevalent fashions and fads, exposed to the volatile vagaries of unpredictably discontinous adhesion and membership.

Surveys carried out within the framework of the Observatoire du religieux (World Religion Watch) over the last decade or so seem however clearly to demonstrate that, in contradistinction with the idea of a multi-coloured, chaotic patchwork of diversity reigning among new religious groups, and despite or beyond surface phenomena, the latter are tending on the contrary to display a fast-developping trend towards an increasingly widespread dogmatic uniformity held in common in most advanced industrial countries, which we have designated under the umbrella term of individuo-globalism.

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