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Islam and Muslim Cultures in Quebec French-language Textbooks over Three Periods

1980s, 1990s, and the Present Day

Béchir Oueslati, Marie McAndrew and Denise Helly

Keywords: Islam; Muslim cultures; textbook analysis

This article examines the evolution of the representation of Islam and Muslim cultures in textbooks in Quebec. Results indicate signicant improvements in the new secondary school history textbooks, both quantitatively (for they contain more information about pillars, key concepts, and relations with Christianity and Judaism) and qualitatively (on account of their depth of coverage, fewer negative views than in the 1980s, and fewer factual errors than in the 1990s). The positive role played by Muslim scientists in preserving old knowledge and enriching is also recognized. However, textbooks still view Islam as a religion of submission, proscriptions, and forced conversion, failing to recognize the diversity within Islam and Muslim cultures.

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