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Law and Society

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Comparative and Foreign Law

2010

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Property Rights & The Demands Of Transformation, Bernadette Atuahene Jan 2010

Property Rights & The Demands Of Transformation, Bernadette Atuahene

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The conception of property that a transitional state adopts is critically important because it affects the state’s ability to transform society. The classical conception of real property gives property rights a certain sanctity that allows owners to have near absolute control of their property. But, the sanctity given to property rights has made land reform difficult and thus can serve as a sanctuary for enduring inequality. This is particularly true in countries like South Africa and Namibia where—due to pervasive past property theft— land reform is essential because there are competing legitimate claims to land. Oddly, the classical ...