n Acta Juridica - Transformative constitutionalism - guiding light or empty slogan? : part II : reflections on Justice Langa's court and philosophy

Volume 2015, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0065-1346
  • E-ISSN: 1996-2088



We engage afresh with the notion of transformative constitutionalism as envisaged by Justice Langa. We respond to the charge that it is an empty slogan, which can mean anything and therefore means nothing. It includes at least two components: economic change and change in legal culture. The economic change must include, at the very least, the entitlement to the material conditions necessary for a dignified life, as represented in the Bill of Rights.We then consider progress, since Justice Langa spoke in 2006, against five challenges that he recognised - both at the level of the jurisprudence during that period and political developments within the legal profession and more broadly. Recent developments suggest that, despite progress, we have been diverted from the path of transformative constitutionalism that Justice Langa proposed, both in relation to economic change and legal culture.

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