Students are regularly accused of being either too liberal or too intolerant: whatever they are doing, it appears they should desist. In this paper I use a combined methodology of philosophy, literary analysis, social theory and physics to analyse the campus as the same breathed space in which many interpersonal ruptures can be made possible, recognised as such and then averted. Understanding this elasticity is urgent, as some are more able to speak freely than others, and it is Muslims who self-censor more than most.
Alison Scott-Baumann is Professor of Society and Belief and Associate Director of Research (Impact and Engagement) at SOAS, University of London, and chair of the Muslims in Britain Research Network. In early 2019 she was commissioned by the government to work with Muslim community groups and improve young Muslims’ access into higher education. She speaks on BBC Radio 4, and has written for The Guardian and several higher education blogs, as well as having been invited recently to brief No 10 Downing Street on her research.
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