Truth & Lies
Project info

Stories from The Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa published 2002 with endorsements from Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Michael Ignatieff, Gillian Slovo and Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela.

"Can you combine justice with forgiveness?" "In April 1996 an extraordinary process began in South Africa. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission, under its chairman Archbishop Desmond Tutu, held its first public hearings to investigate over thirty years of human rights violations under apartheid. The Commission had been founded in the belief that truth was the only means by which the people of South Africa could come to a common understanding of their past, and that this understanding was necessary if the country was to forge a new national identity in the future. In the first two years more than 20,000 victims made statements to the commissioners and, encouraged by the possibility of amnesty, some 7,000 perpetrators came forward to confess their crimes." This book tells some of their stories. It is unique in that it puts faces to the personal testimonies of both victims and perpetrators. In the most direct way it documents one of the most important experiments in democratic justice attempted in the 20th century.