Hartford Seminary

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Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 -†hARTsem DAYS: Celebrate the Arts and Spirituality at Hartford Seminary

South African Truth & Reconciliation Talk with Mary Burton

Mary Burton Better

Join the Hartford Seminary community as we enjoy a talk with Mary Burton on April 12th.

Ms. Burton will speak†about the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and assess how far it succeeded in reaching its goals of

  1. exposing a good deal of the truth about violations of human rights which took place in South Africa between 1960 and 1994;
  2. granting amnesty to perpetrators of such violations;
  3. making recommendations about reparations and redress for past injury;
  4. laying the foundations for reconciliation and mutual understanding among the citizens of South Africa.

This will also entail looking at the pursuit of justice as a foundation for peace, and at present conditions in South Africa which hinder reconciliation.

This event is free and open to the public, but we ask that you register below.

About Mary Burton

Mary Burton is a white South African anti-apartheid activist who was the longtime head of Black Sash, one of the anti-apartheid movementís most forceful white ally organizations. †It is now multi-racial and focused on human rights. †Mary went on to be a commissioner with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and has recently been doing work on the enduring impact of white privilege in South Africa.

In 1965 Burton joined the Black Sash, a womenís organization opposed to apartheid, and later various other civil and human rights organizations.† She served as the National President of the Black Sash from 1986 to 1990, and is currently a member of its Board of Trustees. †In 1994 she served as the Provincial Electoral Officer for the Western Cape province in the countryís first national democratic elections.† In 1995 she was appointed by then President Nelson Mandela as a Commissioner with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. She served on its Human Rights Committee until the Commission TRC† delivered its report to the President in October 1998.

She is a previous member of the Council of the University of Cape Town, and a past president of UCTís Convocation.† She has a BA degree from UCT (1982), and in 2011 the university awarded her the degree of Doctor of Social Science, honoris causa. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Imam Abdullah Haron Education Trust.

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