Politics Here and There: A Discussion with Albie Sachs

Tuesday, November 19, 2013
135 Humanities Instructional Building, UC Irvine
2:00 - 3:30PM

A chief architect in South Africa's post-apartheid Constitution, Justice Sachs was appointed by Nelson Mandela in 1994 to the country's newly established Constitutional Court, where he served until his retirement in 2009. The appointment followed decades of anti-apartheid activism, during which Sachs was raided by the security police, subjected to banning orders restricting his movement, and twice detained in solitary confinement without trial for prolonged periods. He eventually went into exile spending eleven years studying and teaching law in England and another eleven years in Mozambique, where he worked as a law professor and legal researcher. In 1988, he was the target of a car bombing by South African security agents, which cost him his right arm and the sight in one eye. Sachs is the author of several books, including Soft Vengeance of a Freedom Fighter (2000), The Free Diary of Albie Sachs (2004), and The Strange Alchemy of Life and Law (2009). The Jail Diary of Albie Sachs was adapted for stage by David Edgar, and a film biography is in production. Sachs holds B.A. and LL.B. degrees from the University of Cape Town and a Ph.D. from the University of Sussex.