Ayaan Hirsi Ali
Feminist and activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali brought her controversial take on Islam to Melbourne. She spoke to Jennifer Byrne about her personal journey from Islam, how “multiculturalism is a form of racism” and how human rights and cultural belief clash.
Hirsi Ali looks at how “Liberal societies enable, enhance, ignore what is going on” and asks why Australia’s politicians are ignoring the debate about Muslims in favour of “cosmetic debates” about burqas and minarets.
Jennifer Byrne is a senior journalist and broadcaster who has worked in all arms of the media: print, radio and television.
Having done her cadetship at the Age and worked on Fleet Street in London, she was a founding reporter with Channel Nine’s Sunday programme and spent some 12 years traveling the world for 60 Minutes and as anchor for Foreign Correspondent.
She was publishing director of Reed Books, won national awards as a magazine columnist and, since May 2006, has hosted First Tuesday Book Club (now The Book Club) and presented literary specials for ABC1.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali was born in Somalia, raised a Muslim, and spent her childhood and young adulthood in Africa and Saudi Arabia.