Questioning the Category of ‘Spiritual Capital’ Drawing upon Field Studies of ‘Spiritual Entrepreneurs’ and their Role in the Economic and Social Development of British South Asian Muslims
Keywords:Islam, Muslims in Britain, social capital, sociology of religion
The article explores the categories “social” and “spiritual capital” used by sociologists and argues that, on the basis of field studies, by the author and also Pnina Werbner, carried out on “spiritual entrepreneurs,” namely South Asian origin Sufi shaykhs in the UK, the category of “spiritual capital” needs to be sharpened, even redefined, in order to create distance from the category of “social capital.” The article critically explores a number of social theorists who have commented on spiritual capital as a form of social capital and challenges their understandings of religious phenomena.
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