Towards a New Humanism

“Why do we simply fail to establish a more human society in South Africa?  In spite of lofty expectations of a “better life for all”, of the restoration of human dignity, of a society free from discrimination, inequality, racism, sexism, corruption, self-enrichment and fear, we, in 2010, apparently are further removed from this ideal than in 1994.

Human lives seem rather to have become cheaper. Selfishness, corruption and self-enrichment flourish and new forms of discrimination are coming to the fore. The excitement of a new beginning has begun to make way for the disillusioning realisation that large sections of the old dispensation are stubbornly maintained and that the errors of the past are being repeated.

The question concerning where things went wrong and how a more human society can be brought about in practice in South Africa is one of the country’s greatest challenges.”

[SU Researchers: Paul Cilliers, Jannie Hofmeyr, Bernard Lategan.]

Project leader(s):
  • John De Gruchy (Cape Town)
STIAS fellow(s):
  • Antjie Krog (Western Cape)
  • Harry Kunneman (UvH, Utrecht)
  • Thaddeus Metz (Johannesburg)
  • Ebrahim Moosa (Duke)

The Humanist Imperative in South Africa – John De Gruchy (editor) SUN MeDIA (2011) 299 pp.