Islamic Charitable Giving in the UK: A ‘Radical’ Economic Alternative?

Samantha May* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
8 Downloads (Pure)


Muslim financial actions have faced increased scrutiny as financial links to ‘terrorism’ have risen in political rhetoric with anything labelled as ‘Islamic’ being perceived to be in requirement of study in terms of its relation to ‘fundamental British values’ (Kundnani, A., 2014. The Muslims Are Coming! Islamaphobia, Extremism, and the Domestic War on Terror. London: Verso.). Exploring Muslim charitable giving in the UK, it will be posited that much of Islamic charitable practices sustains a relationship with neoliberalism without being entirely reduced to it. The post-9/11 environment ‘has led to renewed scholarly interest in the relationship between the economy and Islam and more specifically the incorporation of Islamic value in daily economic life’ (Rethel, L., 2019. Corporate Islam, Global Capitalism and the Performance of Economic Moralities. New Political Economy, 24 (3), 350–364, 2). Islamic charitable practices potentially offer a resistance to the inegalitarian effects of neoliberalism whilst simultaneously being both a part, and a consequence of, neoliberal dominance. Moreover, Islamic charity in the UK acts as an expression of the Muslim community against a backdrop of security and surveillance. Thus, while potentially offering a ‘radical’ alternative to neoliberalism it is a non-violent and non-conflictual alternative.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)913-625
Number of pages13
JournalNew Political Economy
Issue number6
Early online date11 Sept 2019
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

Bibliographical note

Many thanks to the blind reviews for their constructive critique and suggestions and all remaining errors are my own. The author extends sincere gratitude to all those who participated in this research for their gift of sadaqah. Enormous gratitude to all those who participated in this research. Indebtedness is extended to all who have offered comment and critique on this piece. All remaining errors are entirely my own.


  • Islam
  • charity
  • neoliberalism
  • counter-terror
  • radical


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