Thursday, July 27, 2006

Islamic schools are undermining British identity

Amit Roy:

Christian schools are perfectly acceptable but other faith schools, especially Muslim ones, are a big mistake and should be scrapped if the Government wants to encourage a unifying British identity, according to the man reckoned by many to be the world's leading moral philosopher.

Commenting on the damage that he believes is being done by Muslim, Hindu and Sikh schools, set up because the Government wanted to give them parity with Christian institutions, Professor Amartya Sen said: "I am actually absolutely appalled."

Trying to curb Islamic terrorism in Britain by going through Muslim organisations and defining the identities of immigrants only on the basis of religion had been another serious error.

Prof Sen, 72, who has come to Britain from Harvard, where is he is professor of economics and philosophy, is currently delivering a series of lectures on how religion is being used to pull Britain apart and also encouraging inter-communal violence.

Born in India into an academic Hindu Bengali family with links to Rabindranath Tagore, the polymath 1913 winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, Prof Sen has lived and worked in Britain for many years and was Master from 1998 to 2003 of Trinity College, Cambridge, where he did his undergraduate degree and PhD. Widely respected as possibly the world's top economist, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1998.

Illusions of identity


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