COOL CLASSES: “After the Sunset: Lessons in Transition to Peace: The South African Example”

This anthropology course, co-taught by this semester’s Friend in Residence, engages with issues, theories, and methodologies of nonviolent and violent struggles, peace negotiations, transitional justice, post-conflict reconstruction, and peacebuilding by looking at South Africa as a case study.

Class name: After the Sunset: Lessons in Transition to Peace: The South African Example”

Taught by: Associate Professor of Anthropology Zolani Ngwane and Friend in Residence and Visiting Instructor Nozizwe Routledge


Here’s what Ngwane has to say about the course:
We designed the course to look at South Africa as a case study of a peaceful transition from deep violence and racial conflict to a peaceful constitutional democracy. This will give the students an opportunity to analyze and engage with the processes involved in the effort to negotiate peace. Concepts to be explored include issues such as democratic participation, truth and reconciliation, transitional justice, post conflict reconstruction, and peacebuilding.

South Africa’s transition has been hailed as a miracle, but what did it take to overcome years of deep racial and political conflict and bring everyone around the table to negotiate peace? What issues remain unresolved and what can others learn from that experience? What role did Quakers play and continue to play in these processes?

As a Quaker and former politician who participated in bringing about the peaceful transition in South Africa, Friend in Residence Nozizwe welcomes the opportunity to engage, share, and learn from the students and faculty at Haverford.

Says Routledge:
Creating the syllabus and teaching the course is giving me the opportunity to reflect on the South African experience and draw lessons from it for others. I wanted the space to look back, evaluate that experience and consider what lessons we can draw from it. My first engagement with the students at Haverford has affirmed this, as the students bring a rich and diverse set of issues that will enrich the experience of teaching the course. My hope also is that Haverford will benefit from my being here and that the course will enhance the work already being done by the College.


See what other courses the Department of Anthropology is offering this semester.

Photo of Nelson Mandela casting his vote during South Africa’s first all-race elections in 1994 by John Parkin/AP.

Cool Classes is a recurring series on the Haverblog that highlights interesting, unusual, and unique courses that enrich the Haverford College experience.