Ayaan Hirsi Ali

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.


Portrait of Jennifer Byrne

Jennifer Byrne

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 UK’s Fleet Street, 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, morning presenter on ABC radio, won national awards as interviewer and columnist for the Bulletin and, in May 2006, returned to TV to create the country’s first televised Book Club, which ran on the ABC for 11 years until December 2019.

Portrait of Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Ayaan Hirsi Ali was born in Somalia, raised a Muslim, and spent her childhood and young adulthood in Africa and Saudi Arabia.

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