Quote of the week

My colleagues and I often care for patients suffering from hallucinations, prophesying, and claiming to speak with God, among other symptoms—in mental health care, it’s sometimes very difficult to tell apart religious belief from mental illness…. Our conclusions frequently stem from the behaviors we see before us. Take an example of a man who walks into an emergency department, mumbling incoherently. He says he’s hearing voices in his head, but insists there’s nothing wrong with him. He hasn’t used any drugs or alcohol. If he were to be evaluated by mental health professionals, there’s a good chance he might be diagnosed with a psychotic disorder like schizophrenia. But what if that same man were deeply religious? What if his incomprehensible language was speaking in tongues?

Nathaniel P.Morris
Scientific American
27 August 2009

Book News: The Constitution in the Classroom

The Constitution in the Classroom: Law and Education in South Africa 1994 – 2008

Authors: Stu Woolman & Brahm Fleisch

About the publication:

The law on education and educational practices in South Africa would exhaust the capacity of any meaningful monograph. Instead, the authors of this book engage six discrete topics that refl ect the broader currents and conflicts in South African education debates: (a) school choice; (b) school fees; (c) the right to an adequate basic education; (d) single medium public schools; (e) school governing bodies; and (f) independent schools. The book has two further aims. First: To move beyond the debates taking place separately in the education policy community and the legal academy, and to demonstrate how these disciplines, working in concert with each other, can advance our understanding of law and education in South Africa. Second: To show that the ANC’s complex education agenda must mirror the egalitarian, utilitarian, democratic, and communitarian commitments found within the Constitution. How these competing political claims refl ected in our basic law play themselves out in the enabling education legislation, the case law and government education policy, frames each topic assayed in this work.

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