Constitutional Law in South Africa After Apartheid
This course examines the shape of post-apartheid constitutional law in South Africa. South Africa in 1996 adopted a constitution meant to be an engine for change across a very wide range of South African life. The class will study the constitutional text and the Constitutional Court’s reading of it on such issues as the death penalty, affirmative action, gay and lesbian rights, customary law of the family and of traditional authority, socioeconomic rights to social goods such as housing and health care, government corruption, participatory democracy and the separation of powers. We will also look directly at the role of the judiciary in South African life. Here our subjects will include the efforts to create a judiciary whose members are representative of South Africa, the clashes over particular appointments to the courts, and the ongoing struggle over alleged efforts to improperly influence the Constitutional Court. Our focus throughout will be both on understanding South Africa and its law, and on considering the contrasts between South African approaches and those of contemporary United States constitutional law.
Professor Stephen Ellmann