Fonds AL3110 - CSVR TRC Collection

Identity area

Reference code



CSVR TRC Collection


  • 1994-2000 (Accumulation)

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Extent and medium

3.1 linear metres (31 archival boxes)

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

The Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation (CSVR) was initially launched in January 1989 under the name of the Project for the Study of Violence. It is a multi-disciplinary institute concerned with policy formation, implementation, service delivery, education and training, amongst other activities. The CSVR also operates its own Trauma Clinic, which provides counselling services for both victims and perpetrators of violence.

The CSVR was actively involved in the work of South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) since its inception in 1994, and contributed to the drafting of the Promotion of National Unity and Reconciliation Act (1995). The CSVR interacted with the TRC in the following broad areas:

Offering support to survivors of political violence

Conducting community and civil society workshops

Lobbying and advocacy work

Creating TRC-related multi-media products such as videos and comics

Developing policy for the TRC

Conducting comparative research

Actively participating in the debates around the TRC

Evaluating, analyzing and commenting on the work of the TRC in all its guises

In performing this role, the CSVR cooperated closely with other NGOs and civil society groups, both local and international. As a result, a unique body of documentary artefacts was created which documents the work of the TRC and those organisations that interacted with it.

Archival history

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Content and structure area

Scope and content

As a research institute, the CSVR has generated a substantial archive documenting all areas of its activities. Materials in this collection were collected from its Transition and Reconciliation Unit (TRU) and in particular, from the office of Brandon Hamber, who served as a senior researcher and co-ordinator of the TRU.

Some documents of particular note in the collection include: submissions to the TRC by various individuals and organisations in relation to the TRC Special Hearings on Business, the Media and the role of the Judiciary, submissions from various political parties, documents from conferences and coalitions held at the time in response to issues relating to the formation and execution of a TRC in South Africa, papers, minutes and interview notes relating to reparations, three databases used by the CSVR as it undertook studies relating to the amnesty process and the HRV hearings, and articles and documents collected or written by Brandon Hamber.

Materials collected from TRC Archival Audit.

The TRC Archival Audit

Between 2003 and 2006, SAHA and Historical Papers, University of Witwatersrand embarked on a project to locate, retrieve and make available records relating to the South African Truth and Reconciliation Committee (TRC). The project entailed conducting an archival audit of all existing TRC records in order to identify and locate documentation in danger of being lost.

In the process of conducting the archival audit, SAHA and HP located many collections from individuals and organizations that participated in the TRC process, including this collection. Selections from these materials as well as TRC related material found in the freedom of Information Collection and other pre-existing SAHA and HP collections, were digitized and can be accessed online at

A guide to archival resources relating to South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission can also be found at

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


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This collection is open for research

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