• Publication Date: January 19, 2018
  • EAN: 9781760021535
  • 1168 pages; 6" x 8⅝"
Filed Under: Constitutional

Blackshield and Williams Australian Constitutional Law and Theory – Abridged

Commentary and Materials


Product Description

This is the new and seventh edition of this acclaimed and authoritative book on Australian constitutional law. Fresh material reflects the contemporary approach of the High Court.

The book has been fully revised and updated for major High Court and overseas decisions, including Re Canavan, Brown v Tasmania, McCloy v New South Wales, Murphy v Electoral Commissioner, the Brexit Case and Plaintiff M68/2015 v Minister for Immigration.

Always ‘much more than a casebook’ as Sir Anthony Mason said of a previous edition, the book also presents carefully selected extracts from a broad range of writers and commentators. The reviewer for the Law Institute Journal said of the sixth edition that this book is ‘a great resource for practitioners wanting an authoritative guide to Australian constitutional law’ and a ‘must-have for law students who would like more depth of analysis’.

Key Features of the New Edition

Latest Decisions: The text incorporates full analysis of the High Court’s decisions in the important dual citizenship case (Re Canavan), the right to protest case (Brown v Tasmania) and the same sex marriage postal survey case (Wilkie v Commonwealth).

Substantial revisions to the chapter on constitutional change to take account of the Uluru Statement from the Heart and related developments up to late 2017.

Fresh perspectives on the methodology of constitutional interpretation.

Consolidation of the material on the implied freedom of political communication into a single chapter, offering a more streamlined account of the doctrine’s development.

Major updates to the chapters on the High Court and judicial power.

Fully revised and updated for every major constitutional case since the sixth edition, including Plaintiff M76/2013 v Minister for Immigration, Commonwealth v Australian Capital Territory (Same Sex Marriage Case), Unions NSW v New South Wales, Plaintiff S156/2013 v Minister for Immigration, Williams v Commonwealth (No 2), Tajjour v New South Wales, Australian Communications and Media Authority v Today FM, Communications Union v Queensland Rail, McCloy v New South Wales, Plaintiff M68/2015 v Minister for Immigration, Day v Australian Electoral Officer (SA), Alqudsi v The Queen, Murphy v Electoral Commissioner, R (Miller) v Secretary of State (Brexit Case), Re Culleton (No 2), Re Day (No 2), Knight v Victoria, Plaintiff S195/2016 v Minister for Immigration and Graham v Minister for Immigration.

Also available is the complete Standard edition, click here for details.

Preface to the Seventh Edition
Table of Extracts
Table of Cases
Table of Statutes

Part 1: Australian Constitutionalism

Chapter 1: Foundations

1. Australia: A Constitutional Hybrid
2. Political and Legal Constitutionalism [omitted from the abridged edition]
3. Liberalism [omitted from the abridged edition]
4. Rule of Law [omitted from the abridged edition]
5. Separation of Powers
6. Grundnorm and Coup d’Etat
(a) The Basic Norm
(b) Coup d’Etat
7. Further References

Chapter 2: Origins and Influences

1. Introduction [omitted from the abridged edition]
2. The Evolution of the Westminster Constitution [omitted from the abridged edition]
3. Westminster Government [omitted from the abridged edition]
4. The Constitution of the United States
(a) Separations of Power – Horizontal and Vertical [omitted from the abridged edition]
(b) Judicial Review
5. Further References

Chapter 3: Path to Independence

1. Colonisation [omitted from the abridged edition]
2. The Colonial Legislatures [omitted from the abridged edition]
3. Federation
4. The Colonial Legacy [omitted from the abridged edition]
5. The Statute of Westminster
(a) Extraterritoriality
(b) Repugnancy
6. Appeals to the Privy Council [omitted from the abridged edition]
7. The Australia Act
8. Popular Sovereignty
9. Further References

Chapter 4: Indigenous Peoples

1. Introduction
2. Indigenous Peoples and the Constitution
3. Native Title
4. Indigenous Sovereignty
(a) Perspectives on Sovereignty
(b) The United States
(c) The Australian Situation
5. Self-determination
6. Further References

Part 2: Interpretation

Chapter 5: Constitutional Interpretation

1. Literalism, Legalism and Judicial Choice
2. The Jumbunna Principle
3. The Dead Hand and the Living Tree
(a) Use of Historical Materials
(b) The Intention of the Framers
(c) Textual Originalism and Evolution
(d) Purposive Interpretation
(e) Strategic Compromise?
4. Coherence, Integrity and Postmodernity
5. Legal Culture, Gender and ‘Different Voices’
6. Further References

Chapter 6: Statutory Interpretation and Constitutional Law [omitted from the abridged edition]

Part 3: The Federal System

Chapter 7: Federalism and the Engineers Case

1. Federalism
2. Australian Federalism
3. The Division of Legislative Power
4. Implied Immunity of Instrumentalities
5. Reserved State Powers
6. The Engineers Case
7. Further References

Chapter 8: Australian Federalism in Practice [omitted from the abridged edition]

Chapter 9: The States

1. Introduction
2. State Legislative Power
(a) Peace, Welfare and Good Government
(b) Constitutional Amendment
3. Manner and Form Requirements
4. Alternative Procedures [omitted from the abridged edition]
5. Further References

Chapter 10: The Territories [omitted from the abridged edition]

Chapter 11: Inconsistency between Commonwealth and State Laws

1. Meaning of ‘Invalid’ and ‘Prevail’
2. The Tests of Inconsistency
(a) Direct and Indirect Inconsistency
(b) Concurrency
3. Self-executing Machine?
4. Manufacturing Inconsistency
5. Manufacturing Consistency
6. Further References

Part 4: The Executive and Executive Power

Chapter 12: The Executive

1. The Crown
2. The Governor-General
3. Executive Power
(a) Prerogative Power
(b) Nationhood Power
(c) Power Conferred by Statute
(d) Capacities of Contracting and Spending
4. Control of the Executive
(a) Responsible Government
(b) Constitutional Writs
5. Further References

Part 5: The Judiciary and Judicial Power

Chapter 13: The High Court [omitted from the abridged edition]

Chapter 14: Separation of Judicial Power

1. The Separation of Federal Judicial Power
2. The Separation of State Judicial Power
3. Defining Judicial Power
4. Judicial Power and Administrative Tribunals
5. Exceptions to the Boilermakers Case
(a) Military Tribunals
(b) Delegation of Judicial Power
(c) Persona Designata Rule
6. The Incompatibility Exception
7. Legislative Usurpation and Interference
8. Further References

Chapter 15: Judicial and Non-Judicial Detention

1. Introduction
2. The Lim Principle
3. The Kable Doctrine – Incompatibility
4. Protective Detention
5. Immigration Detention
6. Preventive Detention
7. Control Orders [omitted from the abridged edition]
8. Further References

Chapter 16: The Judicial Process

1. Introduction
2. Retrospectivity
3. Fair Trial
4. Equal Justice
5. Impartiality, Independence and Integrity [omitted from the abridged edition]
6. Further References

Part 6: The Parliament and Legislative Power

Chapter 17: Federal Parliament

1. Introduction
2. Parliamentary Privilege [omitted from the abridged edition]
3. Voting and Elections
(a) Voting
(b) Express Right to Vote
(c) Implied Right to Vote
(d) Voter Equality
(e) Party Registration
(f) Territory Senators
4. Eligibility for Election
5. Resolving Deadlocks [omitted from the abridged edition]
6. Further References

Chapter 18: Characterisation

1. Characterisation
2. Dual Characterisation
3. Interaction between Heads of Power
4. Subject Matter and Purpose Powers
5. Subject Matter Powers
(a) Sufficient Connection
(b) The Role of Purpose
(c) Incidental Powers
6. Proportionality – Purpose Powers and Limitations
(a) Purpose Powers
(b) Beyond Purpose Powers?
(c) Constitutional Limitations
7. Further References

Chapter 19: Economic Powers

1. The Trade and Commerce Power
(a) Scope
(b) Incidental Aspect
2. The Corporations Power
(a) Huddart Parker Overthrown
(b) Which Corporations?
(c) Reach of the Power
3. Further References

Chapter 20: Defence Power

1. Nature of the Power
2. War
3. Post-War
4. Peace
5. Military Justice [omitted from the abridged edition]
6. Cold War: The Communist Party Case
7. Terrorism and National Security
8. Further References

Chapter 21: External Affairs Power

1. Introduction
2. External Affairs
(a) Relations with Other Countries
(b) Matters External to Australia
(c) International Law Other than Treaties
3. Implementing Treaties
(a) First Approaches
(b) The Expanding Power
(c) The Power Confirmed
(d) International Recommendations
4. Further References

Chapter 22: Immigration and Aliens Powers [omitted from the abridged edition]

Chapter 23: Races Power

1. Introduction
2. A Commonwealth Power in Relation to Aboriginal People
3. Special Laws Deemed Necessary for People of Any Race
4. For the Benefit of a Race?
5. Further References

Chapter 24: Taxation and Excise

1. The Taxation Power
(a) What is a Tax?
(b) Fees for Services
(c) Arbitrary Exactions
(d) Incidental Aspect
2. Excise Duties
(a) First Approaches
(b) Widening Views of Excise
(c) The Tangled Web of Dennis Hotels
(d) Alcohol, Tobacco and Petrol
(e) The Grip of Precedent
(f) The States Lose $5 Billion
3. Further References

Chapter 25: Appropriation and Grants

1. The Appropriation Power
(a) ‘Purposes of the Commonwealth’
(b) The AAP Case
(c) Section 81 Resolved
2. The Grants Power
(a) The Early Cases
(b) The Uniform Tax Cases
(c) Limits on the Power
3. Further References

Part 7: Limits on Power

Chapter 26: Intergovernmental Immunities

1. Intergovernmental Immunities
2. Commonwealth Laws and the States
(a) The Melbourne Corporation Principle
(b) Restatement I: Two Principles
(c) Restatement II: One Principle
3. State Laws and the Commonwealth
4. Further References

Chapter 27: Human Rights

1. Human Rights
2. Bills of Rights
3. Trial by Jury
4. Freedom of Religion
(a) Separation of Church and State [omitted from the abridged edition]
(b) Section 116
5. Rights of Out-of-State Residents [omitted from the abridged edition]
6. Further References

Chapter 28: Economic Freedoms

1. Freedom of Interstate Trade, Commerce and Intercourse
(a) Isaacs, Dixon and Barwick [omitted from the abridged edition]
(b) The Whitfield Thunderbolt
(c) Cole’s New World
(d) ‘Intercourse’ among the States
2. Acquisition of Property on Just Terms [omitted from the abridged edition]
3. Further References

Chapter 29: Freedom of Political Communication

1. Introduction
2. The Murphy Catalyst
3. Launch of the Implied Freedom
4. Expansion and Division
5. The Implied Freedom Confirmed
6. The Scope of the Implied Freedom
(a) The Politics of Protest
(b) The Judicial Process
(c) Refining the Second Lange Question
(d) The Electoral Process
(e) The Implied Freedom after McCloy
7. Movement and Association
8. Further References

Part 8: Constitutional Change

Chapter 30: Constitutional Change

1. Amending the Constitution
2. The Referendum Record
3. An Australian Republic?
4. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples
5. Further References

Part 9: Appendix


1. Australian Constitution
2. Colonial Laws Validity Act 1865 (Imp) [omitted from the abridged edition]
3. Statute of Westminster Adoption Act 1942 (Cth) [omitted from the abridged edition]
4. Australia Act 1986 (Cth) [omitted from the abridged edition]
5. Justices of the High Court of Australia
(a) The Justices
(b) Composition of the Court


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