Contesting Islam through the 2012 Sydney Protests : An Analysis of Post-protest Political Discourse amongst Australian Muslims

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The violent clashes between young Muslim men and police that occurred in and around Sydney's central business district on the evening of Saturday, September 15, 2012 have acted as a catalyst for an increasingly visible political struggle among different sections of the Australian Muslim population in the post-9/11 decade. The protests, ostensibly about the film Innocence of Muslims, have brought the contested nature of Islam and being Muslim in Australia firmly into the sphere of public political debate as Muslims aligned both against and with the protestors. This article aims to explore the extraordinarily open exchanges and contestation primarily between Muslims born and raised in Australia in the immediate aftermath of the protests and the mechanisms utilized to contest power, authority and legitimacy. In doing so, it reveals important insights into the debates defining Muslim political identity and considers the broader implications for Australian Islam and multiculturalism.


Institute for Religion, Politics, and Society

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Journal Article

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