Elisa Arcioni, University of Sydney Faculty of Law, has published That Vague But Powerful Abstraction: The Concept of ‘The People’ in the Constitution as Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 14/15. Here is the abstract.
The concept of ‘the people’ in the Australian Constitution is undoubtedly unfinished constitutional business. The concept is “vague” due to a lack of development by the High Court but also because it is an inherently fluid concept. Yet it is also “powerful” because of what ‘the people’ has come to signify, which is something that I suggest should be further developed by the High Court. There are two questions that I consider in this paper. The first is: who are ‘the people’? The second is: what impact do they have on our understanding of the Constitution and constitutional terms?Download the paper from SSRN at the link.