Commentaries on Colonialism: Australian Judicial Interpretation

Hart Publishing
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Blackstone and his Commentaries Biography, Law, History, 2009, 1, pp. 129 - 150
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The focus of this chapter is how Australian courts construed Blackstone's doctrines on the processes of and justification for Australian colonisation. It argues that Australian courts took Blackstone's writings on colonialism out of their original context in order to meet the imperatives of British sovereignty. After analysing the use of Blackstone in judgments by the New South Wales Supreme Court from the 1820s to the 1840s, this chapter will then consider how Blackstone's feudal proposition justifying British land colonisation materialised in New South Wales and northern Australia, and was eventually dealt with in native title case law.
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