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Vol 21 No 9 Sept/Oct 2016

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Goode on Commercial Law

Edited by: Ewan McKendrick
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The Courtroom as a Space of Resistance: Reflections on the Legacy of the Rivonia Trial

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Edited by: Awol Allo

ISBN13: 9781472444608
Published: August 2015
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing Ltd
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £80.00

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Fifty years before his death in 2013, Nelson Mandela stood before Justice de Wet in Pretoria’s Palace of Justice and delivered one of the most spectacular and liberating statements ever made from a dock. In what came to be regarded as ‘the trial that changed South Africa,’ Mandela summed up the spirit of the liberation struggle and the moral basis for the post-Apartheid society.

In this blistering critique of Apartheid and its perversion of justice, Mandela transforms the law into a sword and shield. He invokes it while undermining it, uses it while subverting it, and claims it while defeating it. Wise and strategic, Mandela skilfully reimagines the courtroom as a site of visibility and hearing, opening up a political space within the legal.

This volume returns to the Rivonia courtroom to engage with Mandela’s masterful performance of resistance and the dramatic core of that transformative event. Cutting across a wide-range of critical theories and discourses, contributors reflect on the personal, spatial, temporal, performative, and literary dimensions of that constitutive event. By redefining the spaces, institutions and discourses of law, contributors present a fresh perspective that re-sets the margins of what can be thought and said in the courtroom.

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South Africa, Legal History, Other Jurisdictions
Introduction - the courtroom as a space of resistance: reflections on the legacy of the Rivonia trial, Awol Allo
In the name of Mandela, Derek Hook
When time gives: reflections on two Rivonia renegades, Johan van der Walt
Nelson Mandela and civic myths: a law and literature approach to Rivonia, Peter Leman
Justice in transition: South Africa political trials, 1956-1964, Catherine M. Cole
The Rivonia trial: domination, resistance and transformation, Cathi Albertyn
‘The road to freedom passes through gaol’: the Treason trial and the Rivonia trial as political trials, Mia Swart
‘I am the first accused’: seven reflections (and a postscript) on Derrida’s Mandela, Jaco Barnard-Naudé
‘Black man in the white man’s court’: Mandela’s performative genealogies, Awol Allo
Reading choreographies of black resistance: courtroom performance as/and critique, Joel M. Modiri
What is revealed by the absence of a reply? Courtesy, pedagogy, and the spectre of unanswered letters in Mandela’s trial, Alison Phipps
Lawscapes: the Rivonia trial and Pretoria, Isolde de Villiers
Literary autonomy on trial: the 1974 Cape trial of André Brink’s Kennis van die Aand, Ted Laros
‘The unkindest cut of all’: coloniality, performance and gender in the courtroom and beyond, Chloé S. Georas
Spectacular justice: aesthetics and power in the Gandhi murder trial, Kanika Sharma. Index.