• Young British Muslims in Higher Education: exploring the experiences and identities of Bradford students within a narrative framework

      Johnson, Sally E.; Alam, M. Yunis; Hussain, Ifsa (University of BradfordFaculty of Social Sciences, 2016)
      This research aims to explore the lived experiences of young British Muslims in higher education at the University of Bradford and the implications this has for the construction of their identities. The increased participation of Muslims in higher education has been hailed a major success story and is said to have enabled the forging of new, alternative, more empowering identities in comparison to previous generations. This thesis provides a new approach in exploring young British Muslims identity by focusing on the dynamics underling identity construction through the use of a pluralistic method to present an array of informants’ accounts of their experiences (Frost et al., 2011). Phase one of the research included qualitative ethnographic observations which were carried out at the University of Bradford City Campus and was chosen in order to capture the use of the various social settings by informants and to understand actions, practices and meanings people gave to issues relevant to the research. Moreover, phase one was used to identify diversity of experience and select participants for phase two, the more focused aspect of the study which involved narrative interviews. A generative narrative interview was conducted with five young Muslims and aimed to understand how students negotiated their identity as Muslims in Britain within the higher educational contexts. The research revealed that rather than Muslims utilising university as a place whereby they are able to forge new identities, as depicted in previous literature, higher education is a context which demands the negotiation of identities that both enabled and constrained.