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Monday, 9 June 2014

An Interview with the Late Professor Leslie Ronald Zines (1930-2014)The Squire Law Library and the Faculty of Law are pleased to announce that an entry for Professor Leslie Zines has been added to the Eminent Scholars Archive.

The late Professor Zines was Arthur Goodhart Visiting Professor of Legal Science for the academic year 1992-93. He recently died in Canberra (31st May 2014) at the age of 83. He was Emeritus Robert Garran Professor of Law at the Australian National University. Professor Zines was interviewed on 7th October 2011 during his last visit to Cambridge.

Leslie Zines was a frequent visitor to the Law Faculty (1972, 1978, 1982, 1988, 1992, 1995, 1997, 2000, 2004, 2011), and during the interview speaks warmly of his long friendships with the late Professors David Williams and Kurt Lipstein. It was the former who introduced him to Wolfson College, where Zines was made an Honorary Fellow in 1995.

During his illustrious career in Australian academia, Leslie Zines became an authority on the constitution of the Commonwealth of Australia, the constitutional relationship between the Federal High Court and individual states, and the evolution of a distinctively Australian strand of the common law. In a perceptive and entertaining interview, he speaks on all these topics in a clear and open style. He also passes insightful comments on constitutional aspects of the sacking of Gough Whitlam in 1975 by the Governor General, and differences he had with Justice Paul Finn on the application of notions of equity to Australian Commonwealth governance. Finally, he gives some remembrances of his boyhood in wartime Sydney.

This is the eighth in a growing collection of interviews with the Goodhart professors. Previous interviewees have been: Professor Martti Koskenniemi, Sir Robin Auld, Justice Paul Finn, Professor Jane Stapleton, Professor Peter Cane, Professor Spyridon Flogaitis, and Professor Gerald Postema.