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- Scholarly Musings
Courting: A History of Love and Law in Australia
With Dr Alecia Simmonds
Between 1823 and 1975 nearly 1000 Australians, mostly women, sued their partners for jilting them, or in legal terminology, for breach of promise of marriage. Litigants came to court with their love letters, amorous gifts and heartbreaking tales.
Doctor Alecia Simmonds is an inter-disciplinary scholar in law and history at UTS and NYU-Sydney. She has published on the relationship between intimacy, imperialism and law in Australia and the Pacific and her current book examines the legal regulation of love through the lens of breach of promise of marriage cases from 1824 to 1975. Dr Simmonds also writes columns and articles for the popular press, including Fairfax Digital, and her book Wild Man: A True Story of a Police Killing Mental Illness and the Law won the 2016 Davitt prize for best crime non-fiction.