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Part I Foundations, Ch.1 First Peoples

Sean Brennan, Megan Davis

From: The Oxford Handbook of the Australian Constitution

Edited By: Cheryl Saunders, Adrienne Stone

From: Oxford Constitutions (http://oxcon.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2015. All Rights Reserved.date: 07 August 2020

This chapter explores the constitutional silence regarding Australia's First Peoples and the story behind it. In the process, the chapter illuminates the nature of future challenges. It draws attention to the legal domains beyond the founding document of 1901, such as legislation and the common law, as well as government policy and practice, and their interplay with the Constitution, in its original and amended form. The situation regarding Australia's First Peoples is thus analysed through four prisms: sovereignty and treaty-making, rights and freedoms, political participation and decision-making, and constitutional symbolism. Each theme draws on particular events from the past.

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