Public lecture by Mrs. Janis Grobbelaar, University of Pretoria – University of Copenhagen

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Public lecture by Mrs. Janis Grobbelaar, University of Pretoria

In search of the Rainbow Nation: Strengths and Weaknesses of the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission


Invitation to a public lecture by Mrs. Janis Grobbelaar, professor at the University of Pretoria, South Africa

Time: Wednesday, 6  April, 13:00-14:30

Venue: Bispetorv Annex, room 325, Bispetorv 1-3, 1167 Copenhagen K

The negotiated end of the apartheid state in South Africa was not expected at all. This small miracle opened the way for a post-conflict resolution in and transformation of South Africa, based on forward looking transitional justice: the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The Commission has since often been portrayed as a model solution, a darling of transitional justice. This perception flourishes, as the Commission more recently also could be seen as a counter model to what has been portrayed as "Western-style" prosecutions before the International Criminal Court. But to what extent has the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission indeed been a success? Has it played a role in facilitating the search for the Rainbow Nation?

Mrs. Janis Grobbelaar is professor and head of the Department of Sociology at the University of Pretoria.  She has worked and published in the field of South African Studies including that of local governance, of transition and democracy, of identity, of the politics of race and ethnicity, of HIV/AIDS and of human rights and transitional justice in South Africa. During 1994 she was seconded from her university to the then newly established Independent Electoral Commission as Deputy Provincial Electoral Officer of the Pretoria sub-province in the first ever South African democratic election held.  From 1996 to 1998 she spent two years working for the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

This public lecture is co-hosted by the Royal Danish Defence College, EICRIM - European and International Criminal Law Research and the Faculty of Law at the University of Copenhagen.

Registration is not necessary. Everybody interested is welcome.

Martin Mennecke, Assistant Professor of International Law, University of Copenhagen
(martin.mennecke@jur.ku.dk)