2012 essays

Awards for the 2012 Australian Legal History Essay Competition

Prizes for the 2012 Australian Legal History Essay Competition have been awarded to Alice Rumble of the Australian National University (in the Tertiary Students Category), Sarah Webster of Year 12 at Cecil Hills High School (in the Senior Secondary School Category) and Jenwai Huang of Year 10 at Hornsby Girls High School (in the Junior Secondary School Category).

Alice’s essay (entitled, “That’s Not Your Prerogative : An Examination of the Governor’s Power to Exclude in 1888”) examined whether a Governor in Colonial New South Wales had a prerogative power to exclude aliens. Her supervisor was Professor Mark Lunney, now of the University of New England..

Sarah’s essay (entitled “Reflection”) addressed the Essay Competition’s set question about whether legal history may have anything to teach us about whether, on a proper construction of the Australian Constitution, the national parliament’s “marriage power” should be interpreted as including a power to enact legislation defining marriage as including a same sex relationship. Sarah is a second time winner of the Competition. In 2010 she won a prize in the Junior Secondary School Category. Then, as in the 2012 Competition, her work was supervised by her Legal Studies teacher, Mr Ashok Shandil.

Jenwai’s essay was entitled “How did the Mabo Decision reflect social forces regarding Aboriginal history at the time?” Her supervisor was Mr Tony Cunneen, a teacher at St Pius College, Chatswood.

Each prize winner will receive a formal certificate, cash and a book voucher from Abbeys Bookshop (www.abbeys.com.au) as a personal prize for her essay. Cecil Hills High School and Hornsby Girls High School will also receive a cash award, and an Abbeys book voucher, for the respective essays of Sarah and Jenwai.

The Society has awarded Certificates of Merit to Katie Binstock of the Australian National University, Daniel Rowney of the University of New England and Robert Daniel Turnbull of the University of Sydney for their essays