Author: jali

Politics of Higher Education and National Identity in Pakistan

Postgraduate Islamic Studies Network at Western Sydney University held its second workshop titled Politics of Higher Education and National Identity in Pakistan on Thursday 30 August 2018 from 5:00pm to 7:00pm at the Bankstown campus. The workshop which was convened by Dr Jan A Ali included two presenters, Junaid Amjad and Heba Al Adawy, who discussed their PhD research projects. Junaid Amjad is a PhD candidate in the School of Humanities and Communication Arts at Western Sydney University and his research topic is the Formation of Pakistan National Identity. Heba Al Adawy is also a PhD candidate in the School of Politics and International Relations...

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Eid Al-Adha: Spirit of Sacrifice dinner at WSU

Every year after the end of Islamic calendar of   Dhu al-Hijjah, Western Sydney University at its Bankstown campus host the Eid Al-Adha – Spirit of Sacrifice – celebration dinner. This year was the event’s fifth year and was held on Friday 7 September 2018. The event is organised by Dr Jan A Ali, Senior Lecturer in Islam and Modernity, and is funded by the School of Humanities and Communication Arts from its Campus Life Grant. The aim of the event is to bring WSU Muslim and non-Muslim students and academic staff and organizational heads, both Muslims and non-Muslims from wider...

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Appreciation of the “Islamic Golden Age” in the contemporary environment of Islamophobia

In light of the current political and social turmoil in the Middle East and many episodes of violent attacks carried out by Western-born Muslims in various countries of the West, many Western scholars and anti-Islamic polemicists have questioned Islam’s cultural ideals and civilizational attributes. This is not a new Western attitude towards Islam. The relation between Islam and the Christian West has always been in a roller coaster state. Thus, in contemporary political discourse and media accounts Islam is conceptualised as an alien, archaic, and a doctrine of death whose hallmark is violence and the law unchanging, sacrosanct, and...

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Australian Multiculturalism: fitting Muslims in the mosaic

In the last decade and a half, the Muslim population in Australia has seen a noticeable growth through immigration and birth, making it the fastest growing and the third largest faith-based group in Australia. This truism might give the impression that this has been made possible through Australia’s cultural sensitivities, tolerance, and benevolent ‘Judeo-Christian’ heritage. The impression is one thing and the reality another. This is simplistic and the fact is that the situation is more complex and even nefarious. Whilst Australian Muslims have witnessed a comparatively fast growth in their population in recent years, they have also at...

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Zakat: divine welfare system

Islam is built upon five pillars: faith, prayer, alms, fasting, and pilgrimage and is therefore considered more than just a spiritual system. Among these pillars zakat is at the third position. It reveals Islam’s acknowledgement of the existence of poverty in society and therefore highlights an obvious relationship between charity and poverty. This is a dialectic relationship in which charity is seen to lead to the alleviation or eradication of poverty and poverty in turn lead to charity. Zakat as a means of support and relief for the poor and needy is a divine commandment. It reflects Islam’s strong...

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