Articles on Apartheid

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Nigerian author Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart is hailed as one of the greatest novels ever set in Africa. Akintunde Akinleye/Reuters

What a less Eurocentric reading list would look like

There's a fierce debate underway about changing university curricula in Africa and the UK to be less Eurocentric. Three academics offer their suggestions for a decolonised reading list.
Children develop based on their interactions with people, books and cultural artefacts. History textbooks could have a great deal to teach them about empathy. From www.shutterstock.com

How history textbooks can be used to build kids’ empathy

Are history textbooks constructing the past in a way that allows learners to develop empathy by walking in many different people's shoes?
The more than two million houses built by the state and transferred to the residents as freehold property, many with solar energy, are the most visible of the Freedom Charter’s achievements. Reuters

The legacy of South Africa’s Freedom Charter 60 years later

The Freedom Charter, adopted at a meeting in Soweto on June 25-26 1955, triggered a paradigm shift in thinking about the democratic rights of black South Africans and their protection under the law.
Liberalism means something completely different in South Africa compared with the US and UK, and has racist connotations. shutterstock

Navigating South Africa’s loaded political lexicon

Liberalism is a dirty word for the majority of South Africans. This goes back to early colonialism. Liberals opposed apartheid but not the close relationship between capitalism and apartheid.
A page from a 1934 sex education manual that, like many of its era, managed to be less about sex than about policing racial boundaries. RPH West, Facts about Ourselves for Growing Boys and Girls (Public Health Department of the City of Johannesburg and the South African Red Cross Society, 1934). Wits Historical Papers, South African Institute of Race Relations Collection, AD 843 RJ/NA 18.

Let’s talk about sex education: race and shame in South Africa

In South Africa's segregated pre-apartheid state, even sex education was racialised. Christian missionaries had very different lessons for black and white children.
A 3rd year chemical engineering student from the University of Cape Town in a vacation “boot camp” to help with supplementary exam preparation. Jennifer Case

A different route to reducing university drop-out rates

How do you overhaul a university department so it offers the best teaching, support and development for a radically changed context?
Consumption patterns among blacks are complicated by considerations including race, class position and personal relationships. Reuters/Antony Kaminju

Shaky ground: the challenge of being black and middle class

The black middle class occupies a complex and sometimes precarious position in society, one that requires constant renegotiation.
Sanctions intended to be biting have more often been toothless and about giving supporters the warm, fuzzy feeling that comes from taking a principled stand. Cat dollar via www.shutterstock.com

Sanctions and divestment are feel-good policies that often fail

Sanctions have a terrible track record of success because they’re usually too weak to work and too easy to get around.
Eugene de Kock pictured with film maker Jann Turner. George Hallett

Prime Evil: why South Africa is releasing Eugene De Kock

The release of Eugene de Kock, former commander of the notorious Vlakplaas counterinsurgency unit responsible for numerous clandestine assassinations in apartheid South Africa, raises a number of critical…
Where is education going for South Africa’s ‘Born Frees’? teachandlearn

South African education still fails many 20 years after apartheid

Since the dawn of democracy in South Africa 20 years ago, pass rates in the country’s end-of-school exam – commonly known as the matric – have been steadily on the rise, despite indications that the schooling…
Icon and reality: Nelson and Winnie Mandela as seen on screen. Production Companies Videovision Entertainment Distant Horizon Origin Pictures (in association with) Pathé

Long Walk humanises Mandela, but do we lose sight of the man who was Madiba?

The timing could not have been more poignant: as South African president Jacob Zuma announced to the world that Nelson Mandela, the father of his nation, had breathed his last, Mandela’s daughters, Zenani…
Apartheid legacies of corruption and violence have held South Africa back, but there is still hope. Julien Behal/PA

Let’s not be impatient, there is hope for South Africa’s future

South Africa is not the most comfortable country to live in. Unemployment levels dwarf those in the troubled economies of Europe. The unemployed survive because families redistribute income internally…
Mandela’s long walk to freedom - his release from prison in 1990. Greg English/AP

Mandela death: saying goodbye to a global icon

How do you say goodbye to a global icon? The answer must be: with dignity and by being true to the values that he fought for. By these standards, we all have done Nelson Mandela a disservice. The international…

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