Critical cross?field outcomes: A Rortian view on why and how to teach jurisprudence in South Africa in the 2010s


  • R. Roos North-West University, South Africa


Higher education authorities strive towards a transformed, democratic, non?racist, non?sexist system which will, inter alia, promote a democratic ethos and human rights culture through educational programmes and practices that will foster creative thinking, cultural tolerance and a collective commitment to reach the ideals of a humane, non?sexist and non?racist society. The critical cross?field outcomes that must be demonstrably achieved by any programme approved in terms of the National Qualifications Framework echo these ideals. Law faculties typically refer to their Jurisprudence modules to demonstrate compliance with the requirements that students should understand the world as a set of related systems and be sensitive to different cultures, meanings and perceptions across a range of social contexts. However, the design and presentation of such modules should be reconsidered. It is argued that the ideas of the liberal pragmatist Richard Rorty (1931?2007) provide valuable insights into these aspects and that a new justification for inclusion of Jurisprudence in law curricula is, in fact, established through it.


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