Islam is often regarded as being incompatible with European values. In Italy, for example, anti-Islamic points of view reiterate the religion’s alleged inconsistency with Catholicism and secularism. This article argues that narrative practices can challenge this idea by articulating Muslim hybrid identities that are compatible with Italian culture and society. The second-generation blog Yalla Italia represents a ‘third space’ where young Italian Muslims contrast dominant media stereotypes, thereby creating ‘disruptive flows of dissent’. A textual analysis of the blog and interviews with some of the bloggers reveal that three main topics are employed to overcome marginalization: (1) critiques of mainstream media (2) narratives about family lives and the practice of Islam, and (3) advocacy of a quicker procedure for gaining Italian citizenship. The bloggers adopt a storytelling style to press for social and institutional change and explain how they succeed in adapting Islam to Italian society. Their religious diversity is thus perceived as providing a potential for Italy, rather than being a mark of marginalization.

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Social Compass: international review of sociology of religion
Department of Media and Communication

Evolvi, G. (2017). Hybrid Muslim identities in digital space: The Italian blog Yalla. Social Compass: international review of sociology of religion, 64(2), 220–232. doi:10.1177/0037768617697911