Institute of Islamic Studies Book Launch ‘Systemic Islamophobia in Canada’ with guest Amira Elghawaby

Institute of Islamic Studies Book Launch ‘Systemic Islamophobia in Canada’ with guest Amira Elghawaby
Contributed By: events coordinator
Organizing Institution: Institute of Islamic Studies
Start Date: April 27, 2023 (4:00pm)
End Date: April 27, 2023 (6:00pm EST)
Cost: Free
Massey College – Toronto – Canada

On Thursday, April 27, please join the book launch of Systemic Islamophobia in Canada: A Research Agenda, edited by Senior Fellow Anver M. Emon.


This special event will put the authors of Systemic Islamophobia in Canada in conversation with Amira Elghawaby, Canada’s first Special Representative on Combatting Islamophobia of Canada.

This unique setup will create a discussion where the intellectual and critical perspectives contained within the book can engage with the practical and multi-dimensional aspects of redressing the policies and institutions that enable systemic Islamophobia.


About the book

Systemic Islamophobia in Canada presents critical perspectives on systemic Islamophobia in Canadian politics, law, and society, and maps areas for future research and inquiry. The authors consist of both scholars and professionals who encounter in the ordinary course of their work the – sometimes banal, sometimes surprising – operation of systemic Islamophobia. Centering the lived realities of Muslims primarily in Canada, but internationally as well, the contributors identify the limits of democratic accountability in the operation of our shared institutions of government.

Intended as a guide, the volume identifies important points of consideration that have systemic implications for whether, how, and under what conditions Islamophobia is enabled and perpetuated, and in some cases even rendered respectable policy or bureaucratic practice in Canada. Ultimately, Systemic Islamophobia in Canada identifies a range of systemically Islamophobic sites in Canada to guide citizens and policymakers in fulfilling the promise of an inclusive democratic Canada.


About the editor

Anver M. Emon is a professor of law and history in the Faculty of Law and Department of History, University of Toronto. He holds the Canada Research Chair on Islamic Law and History and directs the Institute of Islamic Studies. He principally researches Islamic legal history and has published books such as Islamic Natural Law Theories (2010) and Religious Pluralism and Islamic Law (2012). His recent work examines the ways in which Islamic history and Islamic law operate under the surface of contemporary legal problems. His Jurisdictional Exceptionalisms (Cambridge University Press, 2021) examines the intersection of Islamic law and international law in contemporary cases of parental child abduction, while his Under Layered Suspicion (, examined implicit biases in Canada Revenue Agency audits of Muslim-led charities in Canada.


About the special guest

Amira Elghawaby is a journalist and human rights advocate. In January 2023, she was appointed as Canada’s Special Representative on Combatting Islamophobia. Prior to her appointment, Elghawaby was a contributing columnist at the Toronto Star,a frequent media commentator on equity and inclusion, and workshop facilitator for a variety of audiences. Elghawaby most recently led strategic communications and campaigns at the Canadian Race Relations Foundation. She also previously worked in Canada’s labour movement in communications and human rights, spending five years promoting the civil liberties of Canadian Muslims at the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) between 2012 to 2017. Elghawaby has had an extensive career supporting initiatives to counter hate and to promote inclusion, including as a past founding board member of the Canadian Anti-Hate Network and past board member at the Silk Road Institute. She has served two terms as a Commissioner on the Public Policy Forum’s Canadian Commission on Democratic Expression. She currently sits on the National Security Transparency Advisory Group, an independent, arms-length committee that advises the Deputy Minister of Public Safety Canada. Elghawaby was a writer-in-residence at the 2019 Literary Arts Residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. Her 2019 TEDXOttawa talk is titled “Multiculturalism: Worth Defending”. She obtained an honours degree in Journalism and Law from Carleton University in 2001.


About the Authors:

Rabiat Akande is an assistant professor at Osgoode Hall Law School. Akande is a legal historian and works in the fields of law and religion, Islamic law, constitutional law, and comparative law. Prior to her time at Osgoode, Akande was a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University’s Academy for International and Area Studies, where she remains an academy scholar. She is a graduate of the University of Ibadan and Harvard Law School.

Atiya Husain is an Assistant Professor at Carleton University in the Department of Law and Legal Studies. She holds a PhD and MA in Sociology from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a BA from University of Michigan in Sociology and Near Eastern Studies. Drawing on the fields of sociology, legal studies, cultural studies, and Black studies, her current research examines how the FBI reproduces older scientific race categories in the context of the war on terror. Her work can be found in Ethnic and Racial Studies, Social Identities, Slate, and Boston Review. She also serves as general editor of the University of Toronto Press series Dimensions: Islam, Muslims and Critical Thought

Kent Roach, CM, FRSC, is a professor of law at the University of Toronto. He formerly served as a law clerk to the late Justice Bertha Wilson. He has been editor-in-chief of the Criminal Law Quarterly since 1998. In 2002, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada by his fellow academics. in 2015, he was appointed a member of the Order of Canada. In 2017 the Canada Council awarded him the Molson Prize for his career contributions to social sciences and the humanities. Acting pro bono, he has represented civil liberties and Indigenous groups in several landmark Charter cases including Ward, Latimer, Sauve, and Khawaja. He was also co-editor of an interdisciplinary collection of essays on the Toronto 18 trials published in volume 44, no. 1 of the Man itoba Law Journal. His most recent books are Remedies for Violations of Human Rights: A Two Track Approach to Supra-national and National Law (2021) and Canadian Policing: Why and How It Must Change (2022).

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