‘Mobilizing Pakistani Heritage, Approaching Marriage’

Richard Phillips, Claire Gail Chambers, Nafhesa Ali, Raksha Pande, Peter Hopkins

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In lieu of an abstract, here is the article's first paragraph:

Some young British Pakistanis appear to have distanced themselves from Pakistan and Pakistani heritage (Jacobsen 1998) and moved on to identify more through their faith: as Muslims (Mohammed 2015). One of the most pronounced areas where this shift has been identified is marriage. Researchers have found that some young British Pakistanis, seeking to make their own life choices rather than simply conform to the interests of their extended families and kinship groups, are resisting their parents’ assumption that they will take spouses from Pakistan, and otherwise follow Pakistani-identified marriage customs (Charsley 2005a, 2005b; Charsley and Bolognani 2017). More positively, they are choosing different ways of doing things, some of which they identify with Britain, some with Islam. Philip Lewis (2008) and Anshuman Mondal (2008) have shown how, by embracing Islam, young people have been able to make and assert choices, in some cases rejecting cultural traditions and norms, in others challenging parents while maintaining their goodwill and staying within the bounds of religious respectability. Drawing these points together, Pnina Werbner (2007: 171) explains that ‘[b]eing observant Muslims empowers these young men and women with the right to choose their own marriage partners, even against the will of their parents’. Their religiosity offers license to ‘accuse their parents of being ignorant, locked into false or mistaken parochial “customs” and “traditions” of the old country’.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-19
Number of pages19
Early online date21 Nov 2019
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 Nov 2019


  • Marriage
  • Muslim
  • Sexual Relationships
  • Pakistani Heritage
  • British Pakistani

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