Dr Nafi Ghafournia

Dr Nafi Ghafournia

Conjoint Lecturer

College of Human and Social Futures

Career Summary

Biography

Nafiseh Ghafournia completed her PhD in Social Policy and Gender Studies at The University of Sydney in 2017 (supported by the Australian Postgraduate Award (APA) Scholarship).  She has been working as a researcher and sessional academic at University of Newcastle.

Her research revolves around domestic violence, social policy, gender and immigration. She has published several papers on religion and domestic violence, Islamic feminism, domestic violence policy, immigration policy, culture, domestic violence and intersectionality. Her latest publications are Ghafournia, Nafiseh; Easteal, Patricia, 2018, “Are Immigrant Women visible in Australian Domestic Violence Reports that Potentially Influence Policy?”, Laws and “Spouse Sponsorship Policies: Focus on Serial Sponsors”, 2017, Laws. 

Her recent book "Faith in Freedom: Muslim Immigrant Women's Experiences of Domestic Violence" published by Melbourne University Publishing (2019) is one of the pioneering efforts to address domestic violence among Muslim immigrant women in the Australian context. Focusing on Muslim immigrant women distinctively adds to the sensitivity and complexity of the topic. More uniquely, and indeed innovatively, the book contributes to understandings of the intersections between factors such as gender, culture, religion and immigration, and the ways in which different social locations interact in Muslim immigrant women’s experiences of abuse. The book examines the implications of feminist intersectional perspectives for service provision, social work education and policy. 

Ghafournia has membership of some professional bodies such as International Sociological Association (ISA), The Australian Association for the Study of Religion (AASR), The Australian Sociological association (TASA), Australian Association of Islamic and Muslim Studies (AAIMS).

She has also worked as a multicultural health liaison officer in NSW health. She has extensive experience working with immigrant and refugees and delivers regular lectures and trainings to health professionals on cultural aspects of health and cultural competency.


Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy (Social Work), University of Sydney
  • Bachelor of Arts, Ferdowsi University of Meshed - Iran
  • Master of Arts, University of Tehran - Iran
  • Graduate Certificate in Policy Studies, University of Sydney

Keywords

  • CALD communities
  • Domestic violence policy
  • Gender
  • Gender and culture
  • Gender and religion
  • Islamic feminism
  • Public Health
  • domestic violence
  • feminism
  • immigration policy
  • social policy

Languages

  • Dari (Fluent)
  • Persian (excluding Dari) (Mother)

Fields of Research

Code Description Percentage
440705 Gender, policy and administration 40
440999 Social work not elsewhere classified 30
441007 Sociology and social studies of science and technology 30

Professional Experience

UON Appointment

Title Organisation / Department
Casual Academic University of Newcastle
School of Humanities and Social Science
Australia

Professional appointment

Dates Title Organisation / Department
1/9/2010 -  Multicultural Health Liaison Officer Hunter New England Health
Multicultural Health
Australia
1/7/2020 -  Research assistant Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle, Australia
Education
Australia

Teaching appointment

Dates Title Organisation / Department
4/8/2009 -  Sessional academic

School of Humanities and Social Science

University of Newcastle
Faculty of Education and Arts
Australia

Awards

Member

Year Award
2019 The Australian Association for the Study of Religion (AASR)
2. The Australian Association for the Study of Religion (AASR)
2019 Australian Association of Islamic and Muslim Studies (AAIMS)
Australian Association of Islamic and Muslim Studies (AAIMS)
2019 The Centre for Study of Violence, Newcastle University
The centre for study of Violence
2017 International Sociological Association (ISA)
International Sociological Association (ISA)
2017 Multicultural NSW
Multicultural NSW
2016 The Australian Sociological association (TASA)
The Australian Sociological Association (TASA)
2016 Newcastle Domestic Violence Committee
Newcastle Domestic Violence committee

Recipient

Year Award
2017 Hunter New England Health Excellence award in the category of Integrated Health
Hunter New England Health

Scholarship

Year Award
2011 Australian Postgraduate Award (APA) (PhD)
The University of Sydney

Invitations

Committee Member

Year Title / Rationale
2019 Hunter New England Human Research Committee

Keynote Speaker

Year Title / Rationale
2019 Central coast Connexions Conference: 16th Annual Conference:Think about the Links: Violence, abuse and neglect

Panel Participant

Year Title / Rationale
2019 Violence against women: 16 days of activism

Speaker

Year Title / Rationale
2019 Violence against CALD women: 16 days of activism
2019 Book Launch
2019 Culturally competent obstetric care
2019 Caring for CALD patients: Implication for culturally competent care
2018 Culturally competent obstetric care
2018 Caring for CALD patients: Implication for culturally competent care
2017 Trends and Patterns: what the research tells about domestic violence in Muslim Communities
2017 Australian Health Care System: Presented at John Hunter Hospital for International Medical Graduates
2017 Global Phenomenon of Refugees, Case of Afghanistan
2016 Domestic violence and CALD women: Case studies at Emergency Department
2015 Child protection: A multicultural Perspective”, Tafe, Diploma of community services

Teaching

Code Course Role Duration
SOCA1010 Society and Culture A Sociological Introduction
School of Health Sciences, Faculty of Health and Medicine, University of Newcastle
Sessional Tutor 1/3/2010 - 1/10/2010
SOCA1010 Society and Culture A Sociological Introduction
Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle, Australia
sessional Tutor 2/3/2020 - 2/11/2020
SOCA1010 Society and Culture A Sociological Introduction
Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle, Australia
sessional tutor 1/3/2019 - 30/12/2019
NURS1101 Foundations of Professional Practise 1A
The Faculty of Health, The University of Newcastle
Sessional Tutor 1/3/2019 - 30/12/2019
SOCA1040 Construction of Childhood, the Family and Society
The University of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts | Australia
Sessional Tutor 1/3/2010 - 30/9/2010
NURS1102 Primary Health Care
School of Nursing and Midwifery University of Newcastle
Sessional Tutor 1/3/2015 - 30/9/2015
SOCA1040 Constructions of Childhood, the Family and Societ
School of Humanities and Social Science - Faculty of Education and Arts - The University of Newcastle
Sessional Tutor 1/8/2009 - 30/10/2009
NURS 1101 Foundations of Professional Practice
Faculty of Health and Medicine Research- the University of Newcastle
Sessional Tutor 2/3/2020 - 6/7/2020
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Publications

For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.


Book (1 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2019 Ghafournia N, Faith in Freedom Muslim Immigrant Women Experiences of Domestic Violence (2019)

Chapter (1 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2019 Ghafournia N, 'Pushing back against stereotypes: Muslim immigrant women s experiences of domestic violence', Working Across Difference Social Work, Social Policy and Social Justice, Red Globe Press, Macmillan International Higher Education (2019)

Journal article (8 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2020 Ghafournia N, 'Negotiating gendered religious space: australian muslim women and the mosque', Religions, 11 1-17 (2020) [C1]

Women¿s presence and role in contemporary mosques in Western countries is contested within and outside Muslim communities, but research on this topic is limited and only a few stu... [more]

Women¿s presence and role in contemporary mosques in Western countries is contested within and outside Muslim communities, but research on this topic is limited and only a few studies consider women¿s roles inside mosques in Australia. There is a complex intersection of gender and religion in public sacred spaces in all religious communities, including Muslim communities. Women¿s role in these spaces has often been restricted. They are largely invisible in both public sacred spaces and in public rituals such as congregational prayers. Applying a feminist lens to religion and gender, this article explores how a mosque as a socially constructed space can both enable and restrict Australian Muslim women¿s religious identity, participation, belonging and activism. Based on written online qualitative interviews with twenty Muslim women members of three Australian Muslim online Facebook groups, this article analyses the women¿s experiences with their local mosques as well as their views on gender segregation.

DOI 10.3390/rel11120686
2019 Ghafournia N, Easteal P, 'Help-Seeking Experiences of Immigrant Domestic Violence Survivors in Australia: A Snapshot of Muslim Survivors', JOURNAL OF INTERPERSONAL VIOLENCE, (2019)
DOI 10.1177/0886260519863722
Citations Scopus - 1Web of Science - 2
2017 Ghafournia N, 'Muslim women and domestic violence: Developing a framework for social work practice', Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Social Work, 36 146-163 (2017)

There is a great deal of research on domestic violence, but few studies investigate the role of religious values on intimate partner violence or faith-based prevention and interve... [more]

There is a great deal of research on domestic violence, but few studies investigate the role of religious values on intimate partner violence or faith-based prevention and intervention strategies in Muslim community. This article draws on a study of 14 abused Muslim immigrant women in Australia and aims to contribute to the understanding of how religion intersects with culture, gender, and immigration. The contemporary climate for Muslims in the West, including Australia, has become increasingly volatile since September 2001 and more recently with the emergence of the so-called ¿Islamic State¿ (ISIS). In this context, the Muslim community has been stereotyped as a violent community whose religious teachings and cultural beliefs support and enforce violence, especially against women. Yet abused women¿s narratives provide a different view of the effect of religious values and spirituality on the experience of domestic violence. The findings of this study of abused Muslim immigrant women focus on four themes: positive role of religion and spirituality; negative role of religious leaders; perception of the relation between religion and domestic violence, and the intersection of culture and religion.

DOI 10.1080/15426432.2017.1313150
Citations Scopus - 9
2017 Ghafournia N, 'Towards a New Interpretation of Quran 4:34', Hawwa, 15 279-292 (2017)

For almost fourteen centuries, Muslim men and women believed, or have been led to believe, that beating wives is a permitted act in Islam and the Quran has been used to support th... [more]

For almost fourteen centuries, Muslim men and women believed, or have been led to believe, that beating wives is a permitted act in Islam and the Quran has been used to support this physical violence against women. Permissible violence against women has mainly been justified on the basis of the Quranic verse 4:34. Since its revelation, there has been a long time challenge to explore the real meaning of the verse. The translations and interpretations of this verse have caused much consternation among scholars, including this author. However, important attempts have recently been made to define or interpret the verse. In this study, two different strands of interpretation are explored: patriarchal and egalitarian. While there are many interpretations of the verse, this study focuses only on the works of some of the most renowned scholars and theologians. A critical analysis of different approaches to the interpretation of this verse shows that the contradictions and complexities related to the verse are not inherent in the Quran itself but are rooted in the intentional or unintentional neglect and misuse of the text by authoritative Muslim scholars. This study argues for a more progressive approach to interpreting the verse which is compatible with a holistic comprehension of the text and teaching of Islam.

DOI 10.1163/15692086-12341309
2014 Ghafournia N, 'Culture, domestic violence and intersectionality: Beyond the dilemma of cultural relativism and universalism', International Journal of Critical Cultural Studies, 11 23-32 (2014)

In immigrant-receiving countries, domestic violence is usually discussed in the broad context of gender inequality among immigrant communities. These debates focus mainly on cultu... [more]

In immigrant-receiving countries, domestic violence is usually discussed in the broad context of gender inequality among immigrant communities. These debates focus mainly on culture turning between "cultural relativism" and "universalism". The paper starts with the critical definition of culture. It explores two common perspectives in details. Each of these two views has been substantially criticized by the opposite side. The paper questions the binary interpretation of domestic violence as either cultural or patriarchal. By examining two perspectives, the paper will argue for the necessity of applying feminist intersectional theory to explore the link of domestic violence and culture. By taking the intersectional theory both structural factors and culture as contributing factors in violence against women will be addressed. © Common Ground, Nafiseh Ghafournia, All Rights Reserved.

DOI 10.18848/2327-0055/CGP/v11i02/43668
Citations Scopus - 1
2011 Ghafournia N, 'Battered at home, played down in policy: Migrant women and domestic violence in Australia', Aggression and Violent Behavior, 16 207-213 (2011)

This paper explores the status of battered migrant women in Australian migration policy. It will start with a general review of domestic violence among migrant families as well as... [more]

This paper explores the status of battered migrant women in Australian migration policy. It will start with a general review of domestic violence among migrant families as well as the historical changes in policies in response to this issue. It will be argued that the policies have been mostly shaped in order to protect non-resident women from being abused by their partners or husbands due to their uncertain residence status. However, there are still some significant concerns that are overlooked. These concerns, as will be discussed, are mostly related to underlying social, economic, and cultural factors. The current policies do not take these factors into account. When it comes to filling in the gaps by considering cultural and social factors, one needs to be aware of ideological and theoretical perspectives. By examining two perspectives a 'universalist' and a relativist, the paper will argue for the necessity of looking for a middle approach in addressing domestic violence against migrant women. In conclusion, by taking the moderate approach, further policy reforms will be proposed in order to fill the identified gaps in the policy. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

DOI 10.1016/j.avb.2011.02.009
Citations Scopus - 23Web of Science - 20
Ghafournia N, Easteal P, 'Spouse Sponsorship Policies: Focus on Serial Sponsors', Laws, 6 24-24
DOI 10.3390/laws6040024
Ghafournia N, Easteal P, 'Are Immigrant Women Visible in Australian Domestic Violence Reports that Potentially Influence Policy?', Laws, 7 32-32
DOI 10.3390/laws7040032
Show 5 more journal articles

Review (1 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2017 Ghafournia N, 'Islam and Social Work: Culturally Sensitive Practice in a Diverse World (2017)

Other (2 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2019 Yang S, 'How saving face silences Domestic Violence in Asian Australian Communities', (2019) [O1]
2015 Ghafournia N, 'Domestic Violence among Immigrant and Refugee Women in Australia: The Review of the Literature', . Canberra: STOP Domestic Violence Conference, Conference Proceedings (2015)

Thesis / Dissertation (1 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2017 Ghafournia N, Like hands under a rock Muslim Immigrant Women in Australia and Domestic Violence, The University of Sydney (2017)
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Grants and Funding

Summary

Number of grants 2
Total funding $10,000

Click on a grant title below to expand the full details for that specific grant.


20181 grants / $5,000

The Hunter New England Health Research and Translation Centre grant in Statistical and Health Economist Support $5,000

Funding body: Hunter Medical Research Institute

Funding body Hunter Medical Research Institute
Project Team

Multicultural Health

Scheme Hunter Medical Research Institute
Role Lead
Funding Start 2018
Funding Finish 2019
GNo
Type Of Funding Other Public Sector - Local
Category 2OPL
UON N

20141 grants / $5,000

Multicultural Advantage Grants Program (Community Inclusion)$5,000

The aim of the project was to build the capacity of refugee and immigrant women to be empowered to live free from violence and have the best possible physical, emotional and psychological wellbeing. The grant was granted to Hunter Women Centre in Newcastle to conduct a literature review on domestic violence in CALD communities in Australia. This has been done through organising a community consultation for CALD women from different ethnic backgrounds and a training session for service providers in the Hunter region (in which I was fully involved). Part of the funding was allocated to do a literature review on domestic violence among CALD communities.  The project was in partnership with Multicultural Health Service, Hunter New England Health.

Funding body: Multicultural NSW

Funding body Multicultural NSW
Project Team

Hunter women centre

Scheme NSW Government
Role Lead
Funding Start 2014
Funding Finish 2015
GNo
Type Of Funding C1600 - Aust Competitive - StateTerritory Govt
Category 1600
UON N
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Dr Nafi Ghafournia

Positions

Conjoint Lecturer
College of Human and Social Futures

Casual Academic
School of Humanities and Social Science
College of Human and Social Futures

Contact Details

Email nafi.ghafournia@newcastle.edu.au
Link Research Networks

Office

Room .
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