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Constitutional Recognition

Constitutional Recognition

First Peoples and the Australian Settler State

By Dylan Lino


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.


Foreword by Professor Megan Davis, Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous, UNSW

1.  Introduction

2. The Constitutional Politics of Indigenous Recognition in Australia, 1979–2018

3.  Conceptualising Constitutional Recognition

4.  Constitutionalising Indigenous Recognition

5.  The Incompleteness of Indigenous Constitutional Recognition: Learning from 1967

6.  Indigenous Constitutional Recognition and Racial Discrimination: Learning from 1975

7.  Constitutionally Recognising Indigenous Peoplehood: Towards Indigenous–Settler Federalism

8.  Conclusion




Published 19 September 2018
Publisher The Federation Press
ISBN 9781760021818
Australian RRP $49.95
International Price $45.00
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Law - Constitutional
Law - Indigenous
Indigenous Studies

Holt Prize

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