oa Comparative and International Law Journal of Southern Africa - The integration of substantive law interests and material justice in South African choice of law

Volume 36, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0010-4051



Justice plays an important part in setting boundaries for the application of choice of law rules. One of the classic dilemmas of the conflict of laws lies on the terrain of the true implications of the meaning of justice in international cases. 'Conflicts justice' may be distinguished from 'substantive (material) justice' for purposes of analysis, but it is also possible to regard the two concepts in competition with each other. Such harsh duality tempts scholars to attribute an absolute meaning to either form of justice, denying the other a say in certain areas of the conflict of laws. This contribution undertakes an investigation of facets of South African choice of law rules and approaches, first to establish what meaning ought to be given to the interests, values and standards that are important to substantive law, and second to determine whether, and the extent to which, material justice is being integrated into the multilateral basis structure of the subject-field. A greater underestanding of the (inner)relationship between conflicts justice and substantive justice in the South African conflict of laws system will foster solutions to choice of law problems that are just and administrable.

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