To Have But Not to Hold: A History of Attitudes to Marriage and Divorce in Australia, 1858-1975 (Book Review) To Have But Not to Hold: A History of Attitudes to Marriage and Divorce in Australia, 1858-1975 (Book Review)

To Have But Not to Hold: A History of Attitudes to Marriage and Divorce in Australia, 1858-1975 (Book Review‪)‬

Melbourne University Law Review 2006, August, 30, 2

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Publisher Description

To Have but Not To Hold: A History of Attitudes to Marriage and Divorce in Australia 1858-1975 by Henry Finlay (Sydney, The Federation Press, 2005) pages i-xiv, 1-434. Price A$69.50 (hardcover). ISBN 1 86287 542 1. Divorce continues to stimulate controversy despite (or perhaps because of) its frequency, and much is written about its legal, financial and psychological consequences. (1) However, little scholarly attention has been paid to the origins of Australia's divorce laws. More specifically, little has been written about the ways in which the matrimonial causes legislation inherited from England (2) was adopted in the Australian colonies--and later adapted by the states and the Commonwealth--or the (frequently abortive) reform efforts that accompanied it. Henry Finlay's final and most ambitious book, To Have but Not To Hold: A History of Attitudes to Marriage and Divorce in Australia 1858-1975, (3) relies on contemporary accounts to illustrate the gradual, tortuous and often bitterly contested expansion of divorce in the Australian colonies from the mid-19th century until the passage of the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) ('FLA'). In so doing, it reveals as much about the politics of pre- and post-federation Australia and the influential individuals who fought for and against social and legislative change as it does about the language of the legislation itself. Until 1975, divorce laws continued to be steeped in ecclesiastical principles, gender inequity, and concepts of marital fault.

GENRE
Professional & Technical
RELEASED
2006
1 August
LANGUAGE
EN
English
LENGTH
22
Pages
PUBLISHER
Melbourne University Law Review
SIZE
282.3
KB