chapter  1
15 Pages

Introduction

ByMichael Connolly

In the 19th century, women were denied the vote because the statutory instruction that 'the masculine gender shall be deemed and taken to include females' was not enough to rebut the common law presumption against women's suffrage. The textual analysis of the judgments may identify shortcomings in the statutory drafting. The multiplicity of troublesome cases revisiting a single issue coupled with the numerous reversals and upsets raise a suspicion that something is wrong with the judges' interpretation of the discrimination legislation on the key definitions. The Court of Appeal in R v Secretary of State for Defence explained that direct and indirect discrimination were mutually exclusive. The issue of motive and victimisation arose in the Court of Appeal. The resolution of the pregnancy discrimination cases was more complex. The chapter also presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book.