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Allan Scott Auditorium, Hawke Building, UniSA City West Campus MAP
Presented by The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre and Centre for Islamic Thought and Education (CITE), UniSA


Who am I, really? The joy of discovering who we really are.

Dr Derya Iner discusses:

The Toxic Relationship between Right-wing Extremism and Islamophobia and Its Implications for Australia.

In contrast to a decline in xenophobia, the annual Social Cohesion reports by Scanlon Foundation illustrate a continual increase in anti-Muslim hate in Australia. On the one hand, political and media discourse contributes to the normalisation of Islamophobia by making no clear differentiation between ordinary Muslim citizens and criminals. On the other hand, the new right-wing extremist discourse, which opportunistically capitalises on anti-Muslim hate (Dean et al. 2016, Miller 2016), intensifies the hate level. The Christchurch mosque attacks showcased how extreme anti-Muslim hate can lead to a bloodshed. Yet, the Christchurch terrorist’s manifesto with its utterly familiar discourse proved how Islamophobic sentiments are common and widespread in public.

While Islamophobia is heightening as a social problem in our multicultural society, it requires a deliberate attention and action by our society members. The first and second Islamophobia reports, which analysed verified Islamophobia incidents reported to the Islamophobia Register Australia, play an instrumental role in understanding and tackling anti-Muslim hate. Referring to the first and second Islamophobia report findings, this particular lecture aims to unpack the manifestations of Islamophobia in Australia with statistical data and real life examples. While discussing the trends of Islamophobia in the Australian context since 2014, the lecture addresses the alarming findings and their implications for our multicultural society. Referring to the latest findings on the resurging right-wing extremism in Australia, the lecture also addresses the intersections between extremist right-wing and Islamophobic sentiments and how they feed each other to dominate the current hate-rhetoric in Australia.

This presentation will be delivered by Dr Derya Iner, followed by a discussion with Professor Mohamad Abdalla, Director, Centre for Islamic Thought and Education (CITE), University of South Australia.


derya iner

Dr Derya Iner is a senior lecturer and research coordinator at the Centre for Islamic Studies and Civilisation, Charles Sturt University. Derya completed her Ph.D. in Cultural Studies (major) and Gender Studies (minor) in Wisconsin-Madison (USA). Derya’s research and publications focus on Islamophobia, especially women and children’s experience with Islamophobia, Western Muslim Youth and their religious identity. Derya is the chief investigator and editor of the first and second Islamophobia in Australia reports. 

Derya volunteers as the executive member of the Islamophobia Register Australia (IRA), and coordinates incident report collations at the. Derya also conducts follow-up interviews with selected reporters (upon their approval and with ethics clearance) to capture the details and impact of anti-Muslim incidents on victims. Derya’s recent book is a co-edited volume with John Esposito Radicalization and Islamophobia:  Breeding Intolerance and Violence (Palgrave, 2019).  

Report: Islamophobia in Australia II (2016-2017)
ABC Radio National: Islamophobia and the Christchurch terror attack
Scholars Forum - Relevance of Islam and Christianity in the Modern World



Professor Mohamad Abdalla is one of Australia’s most prominent and respected Australian Muslim leaders combining the roles of an academic scholar, public intellectual, religious leader and commentator. In 2006 he established Islamic studies as a discipline at Griffith University, where he was founding director of the Griffith University Islamic Research Unit (GIRU).

From 2008-2016 he was director of the QLD node of the National Centre of Excellence for Islamic Studies (NCEIS), a collaboration between Griffith University, University of Melbourne and the University of Western Sydney. Over the years he held multiple distinguished community posts and was awarded multiple civic awards such as the Ambassador of Peace Award. Professor Abdalla is an expert in Islamic civilisation and its interconnectedness with the Western civilisation, Islam in Australia, Islamic thought and Islamic ethics.

He has published widely in a host of reputable journals and publishers. His published books include Islamic Science: The Myth of the Decline Theory (2009); Islam in the Australian News Media (University of Melbourne Press, co-edited); Interconnectedness of civilisations: Islam and the West (University of Melbourne press), and Islamic schooling in the West: Pathways to renewal (Palgrave MacMillan, co-edited).

Australian Human Rights Commission: The History of Islam in Australia, Professor Mohamad Abdalla 
RNZ: Muslim in Australia, Professor Mohamad Abdalla

Presented by The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre and Centre for Islamic Thought and Education, UniSA

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While the views presented by speakers within The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre public program are their own and are not necessarily those of either the University of South Australia, or The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre, they are presented in the interest of open debate and discussion in the community and reflect our themes of: Strengthening our Democracy - Valuing our Diversity - Building our Future.

The copying and reproduction of any transcripts within The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre public program is strictly forbidden without prior arrangements.