Albie Sachs and Transformation in South Africa
From Revolutionary Activist to Constitutional Court Judge
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Many critical theorists talk and write about the day after the revolution, but few have actually participated in the constitution of a revolutionary government. Emeritus Justice Albie Sachs was a freedom fighter for most of his life. He then played a major role in the negotiating committee for the new constitution of South Africa, and was subsequently appointed to the new Constitutional Court of South Africa. Therefore, the question of what it means to make the transition from a freedom fighter to a participant in a revolutionary government is not abstract, in Hegel’s sense of the word, it is an actual journey that Albie Sachs undertook.
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.
Table of Contents
Preface by Albie Sachs, Introduction, Chapter One: Comrade Judge: Can a Revolutionary Be a Judge?, Chapter Two: Abandoning certitudes, becoming human – For a jurisprudence of generosity, Chapter Three: Interview with Emeritus Justice Albie Sachs
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.