Law and Society in Malaysia

Subject 730-205 (2008)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2008.Search for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 12.500
Level: Undergraduate
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2008:

Semester 1, - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: One 2-hour lecture/seminar per week
Total Time Commitment: 144 hours
Prerequisites: Principles of Public Law; Legal Theory Constitutional Law or in each case their equivalents.
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Dr A Whiting
Subject Overview:

This subject gives students the opportunity to develop an appreciation of the historical, political, economic, religious and social context of, and influences upon, the legal system of Malaysia and to reflect upon the commonalities with, and differences from, Australian legal institutions and practices. Topics will include: the colonial sources of Malaysian law; the administration of justice and the independence of the judiciary; the survival of customary law (adat) and the recognition of indigenous native title to land; the constitutional rights and preventive detention as a response to terrorism; relations between ethnic politics and the law; the administration of Islamic laws in a multi-cultural society; the Anwar Ibrahim trial and its consequences; non government organisations and agitation for law reform; and women's rights claims under a plural legal system.

Note: The essay in this subject is regarded as a substantial piece of legal writing for honours purposes.

Assessment: Research Essay 5000 words (due first day of the examination period)
Prescribed Texts: Printed materials will be issued by the Faculty of Law.
Recommended Texts:


Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On completion of the subject, students should have developed the following generic skills:

  • attitudes towards knowledge that include valuing truth, openness to new ideas and ethics associated with knowledge creation and usage
  • the capacity for close reading and analysis of a range of sources
  • the capacity for critical and independent thought and reflection
  • the capacity to solve problems, including through the collection and evaluation of information
  • the capacity to communicate, both orally and in writing
  • the capacity to plan and manage time
  • the capacity to participate as a member of a team
  • intercultural sensitivity and understanding

In addition, on completion of the subject, students should have developed the following skills specific to the discipline of law:

  • to locate, evaluate and use the legal (primary and secondary source) materials of a foreign jurisdiction (in English);
  • analyse the social and political issues facing another culture and make a critical and informed evaluation of the legal solutions offered in that culture;
  • effectively communicate their legal research conclusions both orally (in class discussion) and in writing.

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