• Ivor Chipkin


I had a great discussion with Gareth Cliff and Kanthan Pillay on the Burning Platform. They were largely unconvinced that corruption could be motivated by more than greed.

At an individual level I am sure that pyschologising arguments are relevant and helpful. But in South Africa today, corruption is a mass social phenomenon that requires different terms. I am increasingly persuaded that in South Africa corruption has 1) a specific temporality, which betrays a preoccupation with the present and a lack of faith in any future. What resources there are must be taken now because there will be nothing left tomorrow. It is also has 2) a politics, justified by claims that rent-seeking is a legitimate and necessary path for black accumulation and 3) it has a religion; a prosperity doctrine that reverses centuries of Christian, especially Protestant theology by incentivising the display of wealth as a sign of divine selection.

19 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

The Limits of the State Capture Commission

A shot was fired across the bow of the Zondo commission yesterday. Former President Jacob Zuma's lawyer, advocate Sikhakhane effectively gave notice that he will challenge the findings of the commissi

Welfare and Economic Planning in South Africa

Here is an extract of a new article that Jelena Vidojevic and I have just completed. The system of social grants introduced in South Africa after 1994 were widely celebrated in welfare circles for the