n Acta Juridica - Toward a relational constitutionalism

Volume 2008, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0065-1346
  • E-ISSN: 1996-2088



The South African Constitution explicitly instructs its interpreters to look to the rulings of other nations and to those of international tribunals for guidance. This cosmopolitan stance is an admirable example of the wisdom of constitutional judgments in the new South Africa. Taking such a stance, I dare say that you will find a great deal to emulate - in the United States and elsewhere. But in taking this stance you will, I imagine, draw as much wisdom from the mistakes of other nations as from their successes. Justice Ackermann, whose work is honoured here, has described South African constitutionalism as appropriately 'reactive' to the history of apartheid.

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