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Obligations under oath-- absolute or ambulatory

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Bennett, Kim L (1994) Obligations under oath-- absolute or ambulatory. Coursework Master thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Abstract

Oath-taking is an integral part of my professional life; oaths are used almost as a tool
of trade, and are accepted as guarantees of truth. Whilst there is now a statutory right
to affirm, instead of to swear, an affirmation itself constitutes a formula, an
asseveration to tell the truth. Zeeman J, in the case of R v Mansell decided in 1993,
declined to accept evidence on oath from a child aged twelve years because he held
inter alia that the child "[had] no notion of the nature or obligation of an oath in the
sense that he [had] no understanding of what it is to swear to tell the truth or
promising God to tell the truth and has no expectation that God will reward or punish
in this world or the next".(1) Whilst His Honour's decision was overturned on appeal,
the case demonstrates that oath-taking is fundamental to our legal system and its
function in society. It is not only oaths in court proceedings though which are still the
subject of debate; oaths of allegiance are also under scrutiny in the context of the so-called
Republican debate in this country.

Item Type: Thesis (Coursework Master)
Keywords: Oaths, Loyalty oaths
Copyright Holders: The Author
Copyright Information:

Copyright 1994 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright
owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We
would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s).

Additional Information:

Thesis (M.Hum.)--University of Tasmania, 1995. Includes bibliographical references

Date Deposited: 25 Nov 2014 00:42
Last Modified: 20 Jun 2016 22:27
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