Author(s): John Willmott
Civics and Citizenship provides a wide-ranging and readable guide to the structures and processes of democracy in Australia. It has four sections. The first, 'Democratic principles and practice', describes the fundamental roles and values underlying good government, and also outlines the historical development of democracy in Australia and its contemporary constitutional practice. The second section, 'Law and legal systems' gives an account of the role of law in a democratic society, describes the processes of law making in Australia's parliaments and courts, and describes the processes of civil and criminal law. The third section, 'Elections and democracy', describes and assesses the electoral systems that allow for democratic representation in Australia, including case studies of state and Commonwealth elections. The last section, "natural justice and legal process' outlines the basic ideas of justice that underlie the legal system and through case studies, assesses the effectiveness of the law in achieving just outcomes. Throughout the book are comparisons with other systems, ranging from ancient Greece to North Korea today. The most extensive comparisons concern the political and legal system of The United States.