South African Sociological Association Congress--2002 (SASA2002)

Venue: Rhodes University\'s East London Campus

Location: East London, Eastern Cape Province, South Africa

Event Date/Time: Jun 30, 2002 End Date/Time: Jul 03, 2002
Registration Date: Jun 14, 2002
Early Registration Date: May 30, 2002
Abstract Submission Date: Mar 31, 2002
Paper Submission Date: May 31, 2002
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Conference Announcement & Call for Papers:

SASA 2002 Annual Congress

East London 30 June - 3 July 2002

'Citizenship, Living rights and the Public Intellectual

The transition to democracy in South Africa has raised a host of questions about the nature and meaning of citizenship. While there has been a dramatic political change towards democracy based on universal franchise, the economic structure, and especially its ownership and property relations, have remained virtually intact.

The new constitution in South Africa encapsulates one of the intractable problems in all democracies. It upholds political and civil equality before the law, but it simultaneously preserves economic inequality. On the one hand it safeguards formal legal equality through the franchise, a bill of rights and a range of constitutional guarantees for individual rights but on the other it maintains material inequality mainly through the protection of private property. The fact that material inequality still coincides so largely with apartheid-created racial distinctions raises questions about the long-term legitimacy of the state. Who then are the citizens and who are the outsiders in a society where the people continue to be so deeply divided along a wide range of indices? There are a whole range of other questions in regard to citizenship and the possibility for creating livelihoods, which are enveloped by the basic divide between political equality and economic inequality. What are the possibilities for developing a normative framework with respect for the rule of law under these conditions? Why does it appear that xenophobia is on the increase in South Africa? What role is there for civil society in providing living rights for the mass of the population and in opening up democratic space? In particular, what is the future for the trade union movement and what role do and can intellectuals play? How do we deal with the problem of allowing the latter the space for creativity, but simultaneously making them accountable to the people who pay their salaries, the citizens? The most pressing problem in South Africa and the greatest threat to democracy is undoubtedly black poverty. Have the policies of the state made a significant difference in dealing with this? What are the alternatives and how would these affect the notion of democratic citizenship?

The crises of ambiguous citizenship and living rights manifest themselves in diverse forms in the rest of Africa. Class, ethnicity, race, gender, religion all still play crucial roles in the manner in which different people are viewed. Xenophobia and genocidal conflicts may be an extreme manifestation of the crisis of citizenship and living rights, but they are not the only forms. Marginal economic existence often combines with politically threatening conditions to push a significant proportion of the population into the very fringe of citizenship.

There are the global dimensions of the crises of citizenship and living rights as well, from the plight of indigenous peoples to the racism and xenophobia in the experience of immigrant populations and the poor.

This congress provides a platform for a deeper discussion about these crucial questions affecting the future of citizenship in South Africa, the rest of Africa and the world. We invite you (whether based in South Africa or not) to participate in the work of the 2002 SASA Congress. Contributions are welcome in any of the following eighteen working groups:

Working Groups

1. Crime, Violence and Security
2. Media, Culture and Society
3. Development
4. Methodology
5. Economic and Industrial Sociology
6. Education and Teaching Sociology
7. Politics and Law
8. Race and Ethnicity
9. Environment
10. Rural Sociology
11. Family
12. Science and Technology
13. Gender Studies
14. Social Demography
15. Globalisation
16. Social Theory
17. Health
18. Urban Sociology

Professor Mahmood Mamdani will deliver the keynote address at the Congress. Prof Mamdani is the Herbert Lehman Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Institute of African Studies at Columbia University. Among his numerous published works is Citizen and Subject: Contemporary Africa and the Legacy of Late Colonialism.


Abstracts: The deadline for submission of abstracts is 31 March 2002. The abstract should be between 200 and 250 words. Paper presenters are advised to provide the following information when submitting their abstracts:

(a) The title of the paper,

(b) The name(s), institutional affiliation(s) of the author(s),

(c) Postal and electronic addresses of the author or the corresponding author, and,

(d) The working group where the proposed paper will be presented.

Abstracts may be submitted electronically as e-mail attachment or by post. Abstracts sent electronically should be in Microsoft Word, WordPerfect, or rich text format.

Papers: The deadline for submission of papers is 31 May 2002. Authors are advised to send their papers electronically either as e-mail attachment or on diskette by post. Papers should be submitted in Microsoft Word, WordPerfect or rich text format. Authors are advised to adhere to the Harvard referencing system.


The preliminary programme of the Congress will be available at on from 15 May 2002, and will be regularly updated as we move towards the date of the Congress. Final programme of the Congress will be available on the website by 15 June 2002.


Registration details will be available at early in April 2002, including advice on travel and accommodation. Participants will be required to complete their registration not later than 14 June 2002.

The information about the 2002 SASA Congress will be posted on the SASA List. You may subscribe to for a regular update.


All communication and enquiries about the Congress should be addressed to:

Ms Namhla Zondani, SASA 2002 Congress, Department of Sociology, Rhodes University, P.O. Box 7426, East London 5200, South Africa. Tel: +27 (0)43 704 7082. E-mail: Fax: +27 (0)43 704 7112.

General inquiries on SASA may be addressed to or directly to the SASA Secretary:


c/o Department of Sociology, Rhodes University, 50 Church Street, East London 5201, South Africa
East London
South Africa

Additional Information

Registration Fee: (Includes conference papers, Coffee/Tea Break and Lunch) SASA Members: R 800 Non-SASA Members from Africa: R1 200 Non-SASA Members from Rest of the World: R1 600