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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Polar night: social theory and the crisis of apartheid
Author:Hyslop, JonathanISNI
Periodical:South African Review - SARS
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:political philosophy
political change
Abstract:The collapse of the Stalinist and semi-Stalinist governments of Eastern Europe has raised three crucial problems for the attempt to transform South African society. Firstly, how should one explain changes within the South African State? Secondly, what are the implications of the failure of the Soviet model of socialism for the attempt to create a better society in South Africa; what form should postapartheid society take? Thirdly, what kind of political action is appropriate to the era of negotiation politics, in which political choices become more complex than in the past? In particular, what kinds of political compromises with existing power holders may be justified and which are not? In dealing with these questions, the author seeks assistance in the work of Max Weber. Weber raises a series of questions - questions about political power and its use - which should not be ignored in the formulation of approaches to the transition to postapartheid South Africa. The Weberian tradition on the ethical, political and methodological terrain is in sharp contrast to the currently fashionable postmodern rejection of reason as inherently coercive.