Inside the Mason Court Revolution: The High Court of Australia Transformed

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9781594600616: Inside the Mason Court Revolution: The High Court of Australia Transformed
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This book examines the Australian High Court's enormously controversial and politically explosive transformation during the 1990s. Led by Chief Justice Anthony Mason, the Court embarked on a concerted effort to recast its role within Australia's legal and political systems. The Court moved to the storm center of Australian politics as it became a catalyst for reforms that appeared unobtainable through parliamentary means, including rights for Australia's indigenous population and free speech protections. Securing unprecedented access to Australia's High Court and senior appellate judges, Pierce describes how the transformation unfolded, identifies the conditions that encouraged it, and explores how the Mason Court reforms have attenuated in recent years in the face of a hostile conservative government and in the absence of formal support structures, such as a bill of rights. The book situates the High Court's transformation in the wider context of similar changes that occurred in other common law judicial systems during recent decades, including the United States, Great Britain, and Canada.

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About the Author:

Jason L. Pierce is a professor of political science at the University of Dayton. He completed the research for this book while a Fulbright Fellow at the Australian National University a’s Faculty of Law. His doctorate is from the University of Texas at Austin, where he was affiliated with the Clark Center for Australian Studies.


"Pierce intelligently analyses the reasons for the Court's activism during this period, such as the passage of the Australia Act 1986 and Australia's growing legal independence, the introduction of compulsory retirement for High Court judges, and the requirement for leave to appeal in virtually all cases. This excellent work cogently analyses the criticisms made of the Court during this period that it was too 'activist' and political' for an unelected body." --Law Institute Journal

"Herein lies the book's great importance, Pierce so convincingly argues - utilising the remarks of the very echelon of the Australian profession as support - that how courts function is dependent upon a complex interplay of legal, individual, institutional and political variables that neither camp - lawyer or political scientist - can remain happily in their comfort zone." --Federal Law Review

". . . the judicial comments recorded in this book are in many cases both thoughtful and thought-provoking. They provide great insight into the judicial role and method from those who practise it. Both the divergences and similarities in views are instructive and this material could well prove useful for future studies on the judiciary." --Melbourne University Law Review

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Jason L. Pierce
Published by Carolina Academic Press (2006)
ISBN 10: 1594600619 ISBN 13: 9781594600616
Used Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
(Dallas, TX, U.S.A.)

Book Description Carolina Academic Press, 2006. Hardcover. Condition: Good. Item may show signs of shelf wear. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting. Includes supplemental or companion materials if applicable. Access codes may or may not work. Connecting readers since 1972. Customer service is our top priority. Seller Inventory # mon0000808386

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