English: South Africa’s Constitution protects the fundamental rights of all citizens, including
children. The recent Children’s Act and the Children’s Amendment Act criminalise
corporal punishment of children by their parents. This article endeavours to
describe the dilemma between corporal punishment and human rights in South
Africa. It investigates possible democratic approaches to resolving the dilemma and
offers deliberative democracy as a possible way to guide discussions on this dilemma.
The article evaluates the applicability of deliberative democracy to the
case of corporal punishment and human rights and highlights the need to consider
alternative strategies to discipline children.