The essays in this book raise the complex question of what it actually means to make this transition without selling out to the demands of realism. In addition, the preface written by Emeritus Justice Albie Sachs and his interview with Drucilla Cornell and Karin van Marle, further address key questions about revolution in the twentieth- and twenty-first centuries: from armed struggle to the organization of a nation state committed to ethical transformation in the name of justice.
Albie Sachs and transformation in South Africa: from revolutionary activist to constitutional court judge illuminates the theoretical and practical experiences of revolution and its political aftermath. With first-hand accounts alongside academic interrogation, this unique book will intrigue anyone interested in the intersection of Law and Politics.
Drucilla Cornell is a Professor of political science, women studies and comparative literature at Rutgers University (New Brunswick), a visiting professor at Birkbeck College in London and a Professor Extraordinaire at the University of Pretoria in South Africa.
Karin van Marle is Professor and Head of the Department of Jurisprudence at the University of Pretoria. She works from an ethical feminist perspective and situates post-apartheid jurisprudence within the field of law, culture and the humanities.
Albie Sachs is Emeritus Justice of the Constitutional Court of South Africa. Previous to this appointment, he was a freedom fighter in South Africa and subsequently played a major role in the negotiating committee for the new constitution of South Africa.
Although uBuntu is an ideal or value rooted in South Africa, its purchase as a performative ethic of the human goes beyond its roots in African languages. Indeed, this casePub helps break through some of the stale antinomies in the discussions of cultures and rights, since both the courts and the critical essays discuss ubuntu as not simply an indigenous or even African ideal but one that is its own terms calls for universal justification. The efforts of the Constitutional Court to take seriously competing ideals of law and justice has led to original ethical reasoning, which has significant implications for post apartheid constitutionalism and law more generally.
uBuntu, then, as it is addressed as an activist ethic of virtue and then translated into law, helps to expand the thinking of a modern legal system's commitment to universality by deepening discussions of what inclusion and equality actually mean in a postcolonial country. Since uBuntu claims to have universal purchase, its importance as a way of thinking about law and justice is not limited to South Africa but becomes important in any human rights discourse that is not limitedly rooted in Western European ideals. Thus this book will be a crucial resource for anyone who is seriously grappling with human rights, postcolonial constitutionalism, and competing visions of the relations between law and justice.
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