Law and Critique

, Volume 13, Issue 3, pp 233–252 | Cite as

‘No Higher Duty’: Mabo and the Failure of Legal Foundation

  • Peter Fitzpatrick


The first half of the paper shows how the imperial quality of the common law putatively accommodates the demand for legal foundation. The second half takes the Mabo decision as a test of this supposed ability and finds it foundationally wanting. The continuing insistence of the indigenous presence provides the key.

failure foundation legal Mabo 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Law International 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter Fitzpatrick
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Law, BirkbeckUniversity of LondonLondonUK

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