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Ishak Imamovic, a Qadi and a Book Author in Australia: Outlines of Islamic Doctrine


This is the little-known story about an Australian sheikh, Ishak Imamovic, a qadi (Sharia judge) of Bosnian Muslim ethnic origin (Bosniak), and his forgotten pioneering book, the Outlines of Islamic Doctrine, which was published in Australia. The article comprises three parts: Ishak settling in Australia, his community engagement and a review of his book. It links Ishak’s ethnic background, adjustment to a new homeland and Muslim Australianness through his contributions to the Bosnian ethnic and multi-ethnic Muslim communities in Queensland, and his scholarly book. This article considers Ishak as a first qadi and Muslim book author, especially after the Second World War in Australia. However, his scholarly legacy is still unknown among Australian Muslim and non-Muslim scholars and students. The article is an “Ishak’s call” for better understanding of Islamic ideals and social virtues in the context of his legal considerations. It is primarily based on my discovery of his book, remarks from his descendants, friends and scholars, and the available archival data I read during my field trips to Brisbane in 1997, 2017 and 2023. By doing so, this article recommends reading Ishak’s 1971 magnum opus against scholarly ignorance and oblivion.


Muslim, Author, Qadi, Islamic doctrine, Australia



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