Law, land, development and narrative: a case-study from the South Pacific

Sue Farran

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    5 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    This article explores a primary source of legal studies, case-law, as a form of narrative in the context of indigenous land rights, and considers how this narrative negotiates pre-colonial land claims in a postcolonial context. Its case-study is the South Pacific island country of Vanuatu, a small-island, leastdeveloped, nation-state, where laws introduced under Anglo–French colonial administration are still retained and sit uneasily alongside the customary forms of land tenure which govern ninety percent of all land in the islands. The article looks at the traditional and changing role of narrative presented as evidence by claimants and their witnesses against a context of rapid social and economic change, and asks whether the metamorphosis of narrative signals the future survival or imminent demise of customary indigenous land rights and what that might mean for these island people faced by the pressures of development.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-21
    Number of pages21
    JournalInternational Journal of Law in Context
    Volume6
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Mar 2010

    Fingerprint

    land law
    narrative
    state law
    Melanesia
    case law
    economic change
    witness
    nation state
    social change
    evidence

    Keywords

    • Land rights
    • Indigenous peoples
    • Vanuatu

    Cite this

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    title = "Law, land, development and narrative: a case-study from the South Pacific",
    abstract = "This article explores a primary source of legal studies, case-law, as a form of narrative in the context of indigenous land rights, and considers how this narrative negotiates pre-colonial land claims in a postcolonial context. Its case-study is the South Pacific island country of Vanuatu, a small-island, leastdeveloped, nation-state, where laws introduced under Anglo–French colonial administration are still retained and sit uneasily alongside the customary forms of land tenure which govern ninety percent of all land in the islands. The article looks at the traditional and changing role of narrative presented as evidence by claimants and their witnesses against a context of rapid social and economic change, and asks whether the metamorphosis of narrative signals the future survival or imminent demise of customary indigenous land rights and what that might mean for these island people faced by the pressures of development.",
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    Law, land, development and narrative: a case-study from the South Pacific. / Farran, Sue.

    In: International Journal of Law in Context, Vol. 6, No. 1, 03.2010, p. 1-21.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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