‘Islam and Muslims in Australia: Settlement, Integration, Shariah, Education and Terrorism’

Jan A. Ali

An exploration of Islam in Australia that examines the diverse ways Muslims engage with religion locally.

“Islam has long been a part of the multicultural landscape of major urban centres in Australia and encompasses a great diversity of theological, jurisprudential and cultural practices. Despite this, in popular discourse, media presentations, and political debates Muslims are represented as a homogeneous group. This timely book examines the growing presence of Islam and Muslims in Australia and how it is transforming, and transformed by, social, cultural and religious spaces. Employing critical analysis and macrosociology, Islam and Muslims in Australia provides valuable insights into this growth and development and illuminates how socio-cultural, economic, and political processes maintain and manage the ways Australian Muslims build their religious lives and identities and engage in the wider world, while facing the inevitable effects of modernity. This book argues that Islam in different parts of the world as well as in Australia is more than just a religion, a cultural system or a social structure, but is a complex composite of diverse institutional processes and functions, social routines and norms, and sacred rituals and practices responsible for shaping the lives of Muslims. This volume focuses on five broad areas of sociological analysis namely Muslim settlement, Muslim integration, shari’ah, Muslim education, and global terrorism.”

In this book, Dr Ali provides an intelligent and compelling sociological narrative of the nature of Islam and the cultural character of Muslims in Australia. In doing so, he examines key topics under broad headings of settlement, integration, sharia, education and terrorism and looks at how these phenomena operate in the broader structure of Australian society. His deep understanding of the Australian Muslim community, coupled with the skills of an astute academic, makes this book accessible to all Australians—academics and the general public alike. It is a must-read for anyone wanting a concise, clear and articulate account of Islam and Muslims in the Australian context, with a deep awareness of contemporary realities, and will go a long way towards providing a platform for constructive discussion on the issues raised within it.

– Professor Mohamad Abdalla AM, Director, Centre for Islamic Thought and Education, University of South Australia