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Constitutional law provides the legal framework for the Australian political and legal systems, and thus touches almost every aspect of Australian life. The Handbook offers a critical analysis of some of the most significant aspects of Australian constitutional arrangements, setting them against the historical, legal, political, and social contexts in which Australia's constitutional system has developed. It takes care to highlight the distinctive features of the Australian constitutional system by placing the Australian system, where possible, in global perspective.
The chapters of the Handbook are arranged in seven thematically-grouped parts. The first, 'Foundations', deals with aspects of Australian history which have influenced constitutional arrangements. The second, 'Constitutional Domain', addresses the interaction between the constitution and other relevant legal systems and orders, including the common law, international law, and state constitutions. The third, 'Themes', identifies themes of special constitutional significance, including the legitimacy of the constitution, citizenship, and republicanism. The fourth, 'Practice and Process', deals with practical issues relevant to constitutional litigation, including the processes, techniques, and authority of the High Court of Australia. The final three parts deal with the structural building blocks of the Australian Constitutional system: 'Separation of Powers', 'Federalism', and the 'Protection of Rights.'
Written by a team of experts drawn from academia and practice, the Handbook provides Australian and international readers alike with a reliable source of knowledge, understanding, and insight into the Australian Constitution.