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Fanie du Toit and Erik Doxtader at Lobby Books – In the Balance: South Africans debate Reconciliation

Friday, July 30th 2010 at 5:30 PM

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30 July 2010 @ 5.30 for 6pm

Fanie du Toit and Erik Doxtader at Lobby Books – In the Balance: South Africans debate Reconciliation
Please note this event will take place at Lobby Books (in IDASA), 6 Spin Street. Please RSVP to
Reconciliation is an open and urgent question. We do not agree about what reconciliation means. We do not agree about how it works. We certainly do not agree about what it has done or the ways in which it can be brought to bear on the problems that confront South Africa today. In short, reconciliation keeps us off balance. A source of strength that sits at the very heart of South Africa’s remarkable transition to democracy, reconciliation is also a frustrating fault line and a yet unfulfilled promise.
There are no simple answers. As the leading voices in In the Balance – including Antjie Krog, Zackie Achmat, Njabulo Ndebele, Thabo Mbeki and FW de Klerk – make clear, the question of reconciliation is a question that must be debated – together – with a candid acknowledgement that the disagreements provoked by reconciliation are an opportunity to interact and learn from one another. Only by sharing our diverging accounts of reconciliation will we come to terms with its contested legacy, its contemporary meaning, and its future possibilities. Direct and thought-provoking, the essays here offer staunch defences and pointed criticisms of reconciliation. Together, they challenge the conventional wisdom and sound an important call: once again, it is time to ask after reconciliation’s meaning, practice and value.
Fanie du Toit is the Executive Director of the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation.
Erik Doxtader is a Professor of Rhetoric at the University of South Carolina and a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation in Cape Town.
This is a Jacana Media, Book Lounge, Cape Times and Equal Education initiative
If you have high quality children’s and young adults books, please bring them to donate to the Equal Education book drive for school libraries. For more information please visit
10% of all Jacana books sold on the night will also go to Equal Education’s book drive.