Lecturer, Faculty of Law, University of the West Indies, St. Augustine campus, Trinidad and Tobago, Arif.Bulkan@sta.uwi.edu.
The ‘indigenous renaissance’ of the last few decades continues to generate copious litigation around the Commonwealth. While courts frequently invoke common principles, it would be going too far to say that a unified jurisprudence exists. Moreover, modern jurisprudence in this area is arguably inconsistent and frequently discriminatory, which means that borrowing across jurisdictions should proceed cautiously, mindful of localized nuances and limitations. This article argues that any suggestion that the common law as it has evolved in any particular jurisdiction should be emulated as a model indigenous rights theory must be rigorously scrutinized, for indiscriminate application of doctrines could lead to discordant outcomes.