56. Reconsidering Reparations: Worldmaking in the Era of Climate Crisis

The University of Johannesburg’s (UJ) Institute for Pan-African Thought and Conversation (IPATC), South Africa, hosted a webinar lecture titled Reconsidering Reparations: Worldmaking in the Era of Climate Crisis on Monday 21 February 2022 between 17h00 and 19h00 (South African Standard Time).

Chair: Professor Siphamandla Zondi, Acting Director, UJ’s Institute for Pan-African Thought and Conversation.

Speaker: Professor Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò, Georgetown University

Discussant: Ms Lebohang Liepollo Pheko, National Planning Commissioner (South Africa)

Lancet Commissioner: Lancet Commission on Reparations and Redistributive Justice (Harvard University)

Reparations for slavery have become a reinvigorated topic for public debate over the last decade. Most theorizing about reparations treats it as a social justice project – either rooted in reconciliatory justice focused on making amends in the present; or, they focus on the past, emphasizing restitution for historical wrongs. Olúfemi O. Táíwò argues that neither approach is optimal, and advances a different case for reparations – one rooted in a hopeful future that tackles the issue of climate change head on, with distributive justice at its core. This view, which he calls the “constructive” view of reparations, argues that reparations should be seen as a future-oriented project engaged in building a better social order; and that the costs of building a more equitable world should be distributed more to those who have inherited the moral liabilities of past injustices.

Invitation Poster (474kB)

Event Type


Online via zoom


21 February 2022


17h00-19h00 (SAST)