Lapido Media Book Launch on the Tablighi Jamaat
by- 29th September 2012
Last night Lapido Media, an international religious literacy charity, launched the first in a new series of books designed for journalists on religious literacy in world affairs. Held at the Frontline Club near Paddington, the room was packed with journalists and activists.
Speakers included Jenny Taylor, the founder and Executive Director of Lapido Media, Dr Zacharias Pieri, author, prolific writer, broadcaster and scholar, Ziauddin Sardar; the former BBC war correspondent, Dan Damon, and Jeremy Hunter, the renowned photojournalist.
Dr Zacharias Pieri, is a political sociologist with extensive ethnographic research experience of British Muslim communities. Tablighi Jamaat in Britain is based on two years observation of the TJ in Newham. His current research is directed at identity politics and Islam in contemporary societies.
Tablighi Jamaat, the world’s biggest Islamic revival movement, was founded in India in 1926 to purge the backslidden of British and Hindu influence.
The French security service is said to have dubbed the Tablighi Jamaat, or an other-worldly group of Muslims dedicated to piety and preaching? A movement of separatist, supremacist misogynists bent on the Islamisation of Europe, or a misunderstood part of Britain's multicultural mosaic?
This little-known Muslim association whose name means 'the preaching group' has raised hundreds of thousands of pounds to secure planning permission for its new world centre or markaz in Newham - yet scholars are completely at odds over its purpose and ethos.
The book sets the format for the new series, and contains timelines, pull-out quotes, biographies and background material to improve the media coverage of what Dr Jenny Taylor, a journalist and founder of Lapido Media, describes as the ‘invisibilised religious dimension of so many running stories. ‘We will be publishing handbooks that scratch the itch, and feed the existing news agenda with facts, not our own opinions.