n South African Law Journal - The Politics of Principle: The First South African Constitutional Court, 1995-2005, Theunis Roux : book review

Volume 131, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0258-2503
  • E-ISSN: 1996-2177



Molière had a character, Monsieur Jourdain, much impressed by the discovery that he had been speaking prose all his life. So might it be with judges and politics. The vote for prisoners, the adequacy of public health or education and e-tolling are all issues that stir the polis. In an obvious sense they may be labeled 'political'. But then, as Richard Posner says, that is 'an equivocal term that must be carefully parsed before it can usefully be applied to judicial behavior' (Richard A Posner (2008) 9; see too now his (2013) 105-13). The range of meaning, after all, is from the ideological to party adherence to 'decisions based on purely technical policy judgments' (ibid).

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