Cover image: Clinton Nain, Crowned Target, 2006, acrylic and bitumen on canvas, 152 x 122 cm
When Australians today debate how to achieve a just postcolonial relationship with the First Peoples of the continent, they typically do so using the language of ‘constitutional recognition’. The idea of constitutional recognition has become the subject of community forums and nationwide inquiries, street protests and prime ministerial speeches. Dylan Lino’s book provides the first comprehensive study of Indigenous constitutional recognition in Australia.
Offering more than a legal analysis, Lino places the idea of constitutional recognition into a broader historical and theoretical perspective. After recounting the history of Australian debates on Indigenous recognition, the book presents an account that views constitutional recognition in terms of Indigenous peoples’ struggles to have their identities respected within the settler constitutional order. When studied in this way, constitutional recognition emerges not as a postcolonial endpoint but as an ongoing process of renegotiating the basic Indigenous–settler political relationship.
With First Peoples continuing to press for the recognition of their sovereignty and peoplehood, this book will be a definitive reference point for scholars, advocates, policy-makers and the interested public.
Dr Dylan Lino, Constitutional Recognition of Australia’s Indigenous People: Law, History and Politics (original title), was the winner of the Holt Prize 2017.
AUSPUBLAW presents Book Forum on Dylan Lino’s Constitutional Recognition: First Peoples and the Australian Settler State, 14 August 2019
Dani Larkin provides first post. "Dylan has provided readers and legal professionals alike with a very useful and educational book that better informs current issues surrounding Indigenous constitutional recognition." Click here to read
The Hon Robert French AC provides the second post. "[The book] will inform ongoing debate about constitutional recognition to those who are seriously engaged in it. It also, and particularly, is a valuable addition to the scholarly literature on recognition for First Peoples in Australia." Click here to read
Dylan Lino replies to reflections from Dani Larkin and the Hon Robert French AC. "Putting a book out into the world is, among many other things, exhilarating and anxiety-inducing. The exhilaration and anxiety come from the prospect of having other people actually read it, especially people with such brilliant minds and careful eyes as Dani Larkin and Robert French. I’m honoured and humbled at the evident brilliance and care with which both Larkin and French have engaged with my book…" Click here to read