August is generally known as ‘Womens’ Month’ in South Africa, and during the month, we featured several phenomenal women on our show, sharing with us their experiences, and encouraging us with their stories. Our last phenomenal woman was Miss Lisa Chamberlain, the Deputy Director at the Centre for Applied Legal Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand. She is an expert in environmental justice and her expertise led to the establishment of the first environmental programme at the Centre for Applied Legal Studies (CALS) and she has been actively involved in all of its projects.
Being a female lawyer is not an easy thing, and being a white female lawyer also has a peculiar duality about it, because I simultaneously know what it is like to face patriarchy… The reality is that patriarchy is pervasive.
Lisa says she never really planned to be a lawyer, but had always wanted to be a part of Social Justice, and bringing change in South Africa, so according to her, she became a lawyer by accident. Yet she has had a major impact on the work of promoting human rights, and is currently heading the Save Mapungubwe Coalition, attempting to preserve the Mapungubwe World Heritage Site affected by nearby coal-mining. In addition to her work at CALS, Lisa also lectures Administrative Law, Sustainable Development and Human Rights in the Marketplace in the School of Law at Wits. Watch this exciting episode as we interview Lisa.