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Journal Article

Masks, mosques and lockdowns: Islamic organisations navigating the COVID-19 pandemic in Germany


Emmerich,  Arndt       
Religious Diversity, MPI for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, Max Planck Society;

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Emmerich, A. (2022). Masks, mosques and lockdowns: Islamic organisations navigating the COVID-19 pandemic in Germany. Entangled Religions, 12(3). doi:10.46586/er.12.2021.8900.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000A-F517-8
The article investigates COVID-19 related responses by Islamic associationsand local mosques based on fieldwork in the German state of Lower Saxony. The inquiryfocuses on the time prior to the first lockdown, during mosque closures, and around theopening phase, covering the months between February 2020 and November 2020. Draw-ing on organisational sociology, Islamic studies, and research on pandemics, the articlecontributes to the debate on the contested nature of Islamic representation and the institu-tionalisation of Islam in Germany by analysing internal and relational dynamics, differentand converging strategies, external challenges, and cooperation by Islamic authorities dur-ing the first COVID-19 wave. By taking into account Germany’s multilevel political systemincluding the national, state, and municipal level as well as transnational dimensions, theanalysis integrates external expectations on Islamic organisations and local mosques andinternal discussions within these institutions to relate their responses and navigation tothe contested representations of Islamic organisations in public discourse as well as to thecurrent debate on Islam in Germany.