Examining the Trends of Islamophobia: Western Public Attitudes Since 9/11

Basem Al Atom


This article examined the trends of Islamophobia by looking at the changes in Western public attitudes towards Muslims and Islam that have occurred since 2001, in addition to the factors that have influenced such changes. It employed both qualitative and quantitative analysis in analyzing current public opinion poll data borrowed from: Angus Reid Global, the European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia, the National Association of Muslim Police and the Arab American Institute. In addition, it analyzed current media reports that similarly illustrate Islamophobic trends after 9/11. Results indicate that the most dramatic increase in Islamophobic attitudes towards Muslims and Islamic institutions occurred in the UK immediately after 9/11, with a common theme exhibiting itself in comparing the various country reports and public opinion poll data examined in this study – namely, the involvement of factors such as Islamic clothing that commonly distinguishes Muslims from non-Muslims in inciting Islamophobia. In addition, results indicate that rather than decrease over time, as was initially hypothesized, Islamophobic attitudes are currently on the rise.


Islamophobia, Public opinion, Western attitudes

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/5461


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