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Beyond Expropriation Without Compensation: Law, Land Reform and Redistributive Justice in South Africa

Book Launch, Public Event

Register here by 23 May 2024

You are invited to join us for a discussion and launch of the book Beyond Expropriation Without Compensation: Law, Land Reform and Redistributive Justice in South Africa. The editors, STIAS Fellows Olaf Zenker (Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, Germany), Cherryl Walker (Stellenbosch University) and  Zsa-Zsa Boggenpoel (Stellenbosch University) will be in conversation with Distinguished Professor of Education at Stellenbosch University, Jonathan Jansen.

Speeding up land reform through a constitutional amendment that would explicitly permit the expropriation of land without compensation has dominated legal and political-policy debates in South Africa in recent years. Taking this politically and emotionally charged issue as its starting point, this volume offers both expert commentary on this issue from a variety of disciplinary perspectives and also fresh ideas on how to advance the redistributive transformation that South Africa so urgently needs. It brings critically important debates around transformative property law, the need for diversified land justice and the possibilities of alternative forms of redistribution into productive conversation with each other. While grounded in the complex realities of South Africa’s past and present, the volume speaks to concerns that resonate in many contexts in the Global South and beyond. It will appeal to scholars, students, policymakers and general readers concerned with both the theory and practice of redistributive justice. The book is available as Open Access on Cambridge Core.

Olaf Zenker holds a Chair of Social and Cultural Anthropology at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg. His research has dealt with politico-legal issues such as statehood, bureaucracy, legal pluralism, inequality and land justice in South Africa and beyond. His latest publications include The Oxford Handbook of Law and Anthropology (co-edited with Marie-Claire Foblets, Mark Goodale and Maria Sapignoli).
Cherryl Walker is an Emeritus Professor of Sociology at Stellenbosch University. She has published extensively on land restitution in South Africa, gender and land rights in sub-Saharan Africa and women’s political mobilisation in twentieth-century South Africa. She served on South Africa’s Commission on Restitution of Land Rights between 1995 and 2000.
Zsa-Zsa Boggenpoel is a Professor of Law at Stellenbosch University. She specialises in property law, constitutional property law and property theory. She was awarded a C1 NRF rating in December 2022 and is therefore recognised as an established researcher in her field.

Date and time

Monday, 27 May 2024

17:00 – 19:30​

All times are in SAST (UTC+2)


STIAS Wallenberg Research Centre

STIAS, Marais Road, Mostertsdrift

Related to this event


Visiting scholar
South Africa
Visiting scholar
South Africa


The decision by the South African Parliament in February 2018 to review the constitutional property clause possibly allowing for expropriation without compensation has fervently brought the land question...


Book/Book Chapter

Zenker, Olaf, Cherryl Walker and Zsa-Zsa Boggenpoel. (Eds.). 2024. Beyond Expropriation Without Compensation: Law, Land Reform and Redistributive Justice in South Africa. Cambridge University Press.

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