Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date


Department 1

Religious Studies


With Nepal's recent transition to state secularism, the politicization of Muslim religious identity has emerged with increasing vitality. One particular pan-Nepali Muslim organization, the Rastriya Muslim Mane Nepal (National Muslim Forum Nepal), offers a window into the complex relationship between national and religious identity that animates this politicization. Through analysis of the National Muslim Forum's earliest discourses, produced between 2005 and 2006, both immediately before and after the people's revolution that resulted in the declaration of Nepal as a secular state, this essay highlights the ways that experiences of conflict coupled with a national political transition shape and contribute to this politicization. It also offers a picture of some of the ways in which conceptions of the nation and religious community come together to help define the forum's call for a new Muslim religio-political identity across a diverse Nepali national population. [excerpt]

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