African Journal on Conflict Resolution: Volume 12; Number 3

Date: December 14, 2015
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One article in this publication examines two contrasting and complementary negotiation styles employed by the African National Congress (ANC) during the negotiation process that ended apartheid in South Africa. Taking its cue from the work of negotiation theorists who have distinguished between ‘cooperative’ and ‘adversarial’ negotiation styles, it presents the August 1991 replacement of Thabo Mbeki as chief ANC negotiator with Cyril Ramaphosa as a pivotal turning point in the ANC’s drive to secure agreement on a majoritarian constitutional settlement. Through a historical analysis of Mbeki’s efforts to build trust and alleviate ‘other-anxiety’ and Ramaphosa’s subsequent use of brinksmanship and other ‘hardball’ tactics to enhance the ANC’s bargaining position, the article suggests that the success of Ramaphosa’s ‘adversarial’ approach was largely dependent on Mbeki’s earlier success in cultivating sufficient trust and confidence between the two main parties as to enable them to come to an ultimately ‘irreversible’ understanding of their mutual interest in making peace.

Another article looks at divorce and family mediation in South Africa. This article explores the principles and processes of Western-style divorce and family mediation, as well as the principles and processes of African humanistic mediation, as they are applied in South Africa. Critique, as well as the advantages of both approaches, is dealt with. Similarities between the principles are explored. This strategy is informed by holistic knowledge. The knowledge relied upon sometimes demonstrates conflicting worldviews and is in a specific cultural context. The challenge is to find a holistic way of mediation in South Africa. This article proposes ways in which humanistic mediation can be used to positively influence and change the current family mediation practice in South Africa.


ISBN: 1652-6997
Publisher: ACCORD
Edition: Volume 12; Number 3
Year of Publication: 2012

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