LEGAL PLURALISM IN SOUTH AFRICA – ASPECTS OF AFRICAN CUSTOMARY, MUSLIM AND HINDU FAMILY LAW

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South Africa is a pluralistic society comprising different social groups and systems of personal law and cultural or religious beliefs, all of which are constitutionally protected against any form of unfair discrimination. Legal pluralism focuses specifically on the recent developments in South African law concerning the legal recognition of African Customary marriages and aspects of Hindu and Muslim religious marriages.

Legal pluralism outlines the origins of prominent African customary laws and religious legal systems, as well as the extent to which they have been applied and retained in the South African legal system. It includes a thorough analysis of the legal implications of the Recognition of Customary Marriages Act 120 of 1998; section 5A of the Divorce Act; the Recognition of Muslim Marriages Bill; the Natal Code of Zulu Law Proc R151 of 1987; and a number of the Court decisions dealing with various aspects of religious and customary marriages.

Topics covered include the following:

  • The legal significance of extended families according to personal law
  • Proof of existence of a customary marriage
  • The effect of affiliation: custody and guardianship
  • Polygamy
  • The doctrine of religious entanglement
  • Legal pluralism and personal family law
  • Forms of religious and customary marriages

Legal pluralism is aimed at lawyers, students and academics alike.

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