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The Impossible Machine: A Genealogy of South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commissionby Adam Sitze
Synopses & Reviews
Adam Sitze meticulously traces the origins of South Africaand#8217;s Truth and Reconciliation Commission back to two well-established instruments of colonial and imperial governance: the jurisprudence of indemnity and the commission of inquiry. This genealogy provides a fresh, though counterintuitive, understanding of the TRCand#8217;s legal, political, and cultural importance. The TRCand#8217;s genius, Sitze contends, is not the substitution of and#8220;forgivingand#8221; restorative justice for and#8220;strictand#8221; legal justice but rather the innovative adaptation of colonial law, sovereignty, and government. However, this also contains a potential liability: if the TRCand#8217;s origins are forgotten, the very enterprise intended to overturn the jurisprudence of colonial rule may perpetuate it. In sum, Sitze proposes a provocative new means by which South Africaand#8217;s Truth and Reconciliation Commission should be understood and evaluated.
A fresh, though counterintuitive, understanding of South Africaand#8217;s Truth and Reconciliation Commissionand#8217;s legal, political, and cultural heritage
About the Author
Adam Sitze is Assistant Professor of Law, Jurisprudence, and Social Thought at Amherst College.
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History and Social Science » Africa » South Africa