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Kumarangk (Hindmarsh Island) and the Politics of Natural Justice under Settler‐Colonialism

  • Robert van Krieken

Abstract

This article examines the impact of the application of apparently impartial principles of procedural fairness and natural justice on the construction of “authentic” and “inauthentic” knowledge of Aboriginal culture. It discusses the progression of the Kumarangk (Hindmarsh Island) court cases and the legal construction of public participation in the making of political decisions affecting Aboriginal interests in land. In examining the politics of competing interests in land, this article reflects on the tension between Indigenous interests in land and settler developmentalism in relation to the Australian jurisprudence of procedural fairness and natural justice. The arguments running through the article concern the questions of the ways in which the liberal restraint on power is embodied in the impartial principles of administrative law, where that power creates rather than infringes upon rights, why it generates a particular legal construction of Aboriginal interests in land and cultural heritage, and the extent to which this plays a role in the maintenance of relations of settler‐colonial dispossession.

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Kumarangk (Hindmarsh Island) and the Politics of Natural Justice under Settler‐Colonialism

  • Robert van Krieken

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