Law and Democracy

Contemporary Questions
Edited by:
ISBN (print): 9781925022018
ISBN (online): 9781925022063
Publication date: December 2014
Imprint: ANU Press

Law and Democracy: Contemporary Questions provides a fresh understanding of law’s regulation of Australian democracy. The book enriches public law scholarship, deepening and challenging the current conceptions of law’s regulation of popular participation and legal representation. The book raises and addresses a number of contemporary questions about legal institutions, principles and practices:

  • How should the meaning of ‘the people’ in the Australian Constitution be defined by the High Court of Australia?
  • How do developing judicial conceptions of democracy define citizenship?
  • What is the legal right to participate in the political community?
  • Should political advisors to Ministers be subject to legal accountability mechanisms?
  • What challenges do applied law schemes pose to notions of responsible government and how can they be best addressed?
  • How can the study of the ritual of electoral politics in Australia and other common law countries supplement the standard account of democracy?
  • How might the ritual of the pledge of Australian citizenship limit or enhance democratic participation?
  • What is the conflict between legal restrictions of freedom of expression and democracy, and the role of social media?

Examining the regulation of democracy, this book scrutinises the assumptions and scope of constitutional democracy and enhances our understanding of the frontiers of accountability and responsible government. In addition, key issues of law, culture and democracy are revealed in their socio-legal context.
The book brings together emerging and established scholars and practitioners with expertise in public law. It will be of interest to those studying law, politics, cultural studies and contemporary history.