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Description - Looking Back, Reaching Forward by Zed Books

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission chaired by Archbishop Desmond Tutu has been a defining experience in South Africa's transition to democratic and non-racial rule, and probably the most complete attempt to heal a society after the brutalities of violent government. This anthology is the first assessment of the Commission process. It reviews the national and international context in which the TRC did its work, explores the philosophical and ethical logic of the exercise, and examines the multiple purposes which the Commission set out to achieve. Intended to deepen debate within South Africa on the contested TRC process, this book illuminates the realities of South Africa today and contains powerful lessons for other countries thinking about embarking on similar exercises to establish both the truth of what happened and reconciliation between victims and oppressors. CONPart 1 The hi storical context and origins of the Commission: a struggle for human rights - from the UN Declaration of Human Rights to the International Criminal Court, Damnosa Ntsebeza; the historical and legal origins of the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Johnny de Lange; other Truth Commissions and the uniqueness of the South African initiative, Priscilla Hayner; justice without punishment - guaranteeing human rights in transitional societies, Paul van Zyl. Part 2 The philosophical framework of the Commission: the moral justification of Truth Commissions, Rajeev Bhargava; restorative justice - dealing with the past differently, Charles Villa-Vicencio; when assassins cry foul - the modern doctrine of the just war, Kader Asmal et al; the law and struggle - the same, but different, Hugh Corder; about establishing reality, Colleen Scott; truth and reconciliation as performance - spectre of eucharistic redemption, Ebrahim Moosa; the Baruti versus the lawyers - the role of religion in the TRC Process, Piet Meiring. Part 3 What the Commission sought to achieve: historical truth - something to fight for, Janet Cherry; truth as a trigger for transformation - from Apartheid injustice to transformation justice, Willie Esterhuyse; towards the recognition of our past injuries, Wilhem Verwoerd; where healing begins, Yazir Henry; justice and South African amnesty, Ronald C. Slye; amnesty - the burden of victims, Richard Lyster; amnesty and denial, Nkosinathi Biko; getting on with life - a move towards reconciliation, Charles Villa-Vicencio; reconciliation - a call to action, Mxolisi Mgxashe; understanding perpetrators, Don Foster; reparation delayed is healing retarded, Wendy Orr; insufficient healing and reparation, Nomfundo Walaza. Part 4 After the Commission, what? the economic challenge, Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane; national reconciliation, Jakes Gerwel. Part 1 A postscript: the debate continues.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9781856498203
ISBN-10: 1856498204
Format: Paperback
Pages: 344
Imprint: Zed Books Ltd
Publisher: Zed Books Ltd
Publish Date: 1-Feb-2000
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Zed Books

Charles Villa-Vicencio is the former director of research of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. His coeditor, Wilhelm Verwoerd, teaches in the department of philosophy at the University of Stellenbosch, and was a former researcher with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.