The legal and Religious nature of Aboriginal Customary Law: Focus on Madayin

Danial Terence Kelly

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    The Yolngu Aboriginal people of Arnhem Land have traditionally recognised the authority of the Madayin system to order their lives. The Madayin system, like other Aboriginal systems of authority, is often translated into English as a system of Aboriginal customary law. However this description of ‘law’ ignores the religious nature of these systems. This article argues that religion and law are inseparable in traditional Aboriginal authority systems and therefore Madayin is as much religion as it is law.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)50-73
    Number of pages24
    JournalUniversity of Notre Dame Australia Law Review
    Volume16
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2014

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