The Effects of the Apartheid in South Africa
History 105 Final Project
The South African apartheid was a tough time for the non whites. Even though the non-whites created about 80% of the population of south africa, segregation was one of the many aspects to the apartheid which made the non whites use designated racial areas. Apartheid can be defined as a former policy of segregation and political and economic discrimination against non-European groups in the Republic of South Africa. An example of apartheid in another country would be the modern state of Israel wanted to keep their country only for Jewish people and not allow any non-Jews to have human rights or citizenship.1
Penny Sparrow is a South African real estate agent who posted a Facebook rant comparing black people to monkeys. The post created a racial divide even though the apartheid system has ended more than two decades ago.2 Penny tried to apologize by saying her comments were not meant to be personal but then when she did a website interview, she compares blacks to monkeys again. A survey conducted for South Africans to see if they believe that racism is still a problem even though the apartheid system is no longer. 66% said they still face racism today. The democratic Alliance Party no longer accept Penny Sparrow due to her racist comments. They let go another member in the past for also being racist.
This article is fairly recent but it still brought back some familiarity of apartheid. Penny Sparrow, a real estate agent in South Africa, posted a racist post on her facebook that helped create a racial divide. During the time when apartheid was active, there were designated areas for certain races. In the article, there was survey stating that 60% of black south africans still face racism on a daily basis.2 In some ways this article makes me some what believe that the apartheid could come back. There needs to be more than just one race trying to make thing more equal for all.
Dixon, Robyn. “THE WORLD; Racist Rant on Facebook Hits a Nerve; In South Africa, One Woman’s Hateful Post — 21 Years after the End of Apartheid — Is Just Part of a Wave.”
2ProQuest, Los Angeles Times, 5 Jan. 2016, search.proquest.com/usnews/docview/1753168699/90B0E375DAC742ECPQ/1?accountid=14902.
In 1948, Prime Minister, Daniel F. Malan announced what the new policy of apartheid would entail. Multiple laws were soon enforced after apartheid came into effect. For example, in 1950, The Population Registration Act was put into place.It Led to the creation of a national register in which every person’s race was recorded. A Race Classification Board took the final decision on what a person’s race was in disputed cases.3
The apartheid system divided the country along racial lines and created segregation throughout the country. Contact between the whites and non whites was extremely limited as they lived two different lives away from each other.4 The whites live of life of being in superior of other races. For example, the author of the article “What Life Was Like In South Africa During Apartheid” experienced racism as she watched her mom get denied a bathroom key at a gas station after they paid for gas because the restrooms were for whites only.5 The citizenship of nonwhites was stipped and all non white political representation was abolished.6
As you know, segregation was a main aspect to apartheid. The contact between whites and non-whites was very little. Black South Africans were removed from rural areas so it could be designated to whites.7 No matter how much the non-whites protested to have equality for all races, they would be shut down. Resistance to apartheid grew bigger and bigger until leaders and activist started to get arrested. They were trying to do everything they can to make things right. It was hard for the non whites to stand up for themselves as they were on the bottom of the social class due to their inability to speak proper english. They also had trouble getting employed since most had little to no education.
3Thompsell, Angela. “The Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act.” ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/prohibition-of-mixed-marriages-act-43464 (accessed December 7, 2017).
History.com Staff. “Apartheid.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 2010,
5Faul, Michelle. “What Life Was Like In South Africa During Apartheid.” Business Insider. December 09, 2013. Accessed December 07, 2017. http://www.businessinsider.com/what-life-was-like-in-south-africa-during-apartheid-2013-12
Picture Apartheid Signage, 1953
© Drum Social Histories / Baileys African History Archive / Africa Media Online
My primary source is a newspaper from 1967. Which pertained to all races of South Africa but it may have stood out more to the African South Americans. In this newspaper article, it brought attention to the fact that South African Airlines is racist but hides it by saying that all is welcomed even though that is not the case.8 For example, the author explained that the first thing that blacks would see once they arrived in johannesburg would be a racially designated sign. It’s unknown when this article was written but it was published in 1967. I would like to safely assume that the author is black because in the article he/she says “We are black americans…”. Since the author is black, then he/she can relate to the racist actions that SAA is making. Some unspoken assumptions i can make from this article is that South African Airlines is either unaware of their racism or they intentionally choose not to address it.
In this display advertisement for South African Airlines, it exposes the truth of their racism. They tried to make it seem very welcoming to all races. Once the plane lands in johannesburg, there would be designated racial areas. There would be little to no contact between the whites and non-whites. SAA was just another organization that tried to blind the people. They would advertise to make everything seem welcoming but it reality it was all the same unequal things that non whites had to go through. Nothing has changed and the airline failed to show that.
Nelson Mandela played a major role in the end of the apartheid in south africa as he was a global advocate for human rights. Mandela was a member of the African National Congress party beginning in the 1940s, he was a leader of both peaceful protests and armed resistance against the white minority’s oppressive regime in a racially divided South Africa.9 Even though he was imprisoned for 27 years, Nelson Mandela still fought for democracy and a free society.10 In 1994, South Africa held its first democratic election where Nelson Mandela was elected the country’s first black president.11
6Mark Byrnes @markbyrnes525 Feed Mark Byrnes is a senior associate editor at CityLab who writes about design and architecture. “Life in Apartheid-Era South Africa.” CityLab. April 17, 2014. Accessed December 07, 2017. https://www.citylab.com/equity/2013/12/life-apartheid-era-south-africa/7821/.
7Dubow, Saul. Racial segregation and the origin of apartheid in South Africa, 1919-36. Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1989.
8Display ad. (1969, May 28). New York Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/118590994?accountid=14902
9History.com Staff. “Nelson Mandela.” History.com. 2009. Accessed December 07, 2017. http://www.history.com/topics/nelson-mandela.
The African National Congress was first named the South African Native National Congress as it’s main goal was the maintenance of voting rights for Colored and black Africans.12 In 1952, the defiance campaign was put into place. In 1960, the ANC was outlawed and had no political say in anything. With Nelson Mandela as their leader, the ANC turned to sabotage to fight against the apartheid. Once F.W. de Klerk became president in 1989, he lifted the executions and ban on the African National Congress.
The united nations denounced apartheid which led to new changes. Post apartheid there was a new constitution written by the public and representatives. It was created so it could eliminate the unequal troubles that were caused during when apartheid was in effect. Non-racialism, non-sexism, and expansion on language are just a few of the positive changes made to the constitution. It allowed for black south africans to take a step forward to a new life of equality. They no longer had to worry about being in their designated area or keeping little contact with the whites.
Even though President F.W. de Kle beat the conservative party, they still refused to negotiate with black african americans. The problem soon became less about race and more about which political party can take control. Codesa allowed for the country to be placed under majority rule. The U.S soon helped South Africa to develop democracy. The democracy allowed for the country to achieve political liberalization and economic growth.
It’s been about 24 years since the apartheid has ended but there are still some problems facing south africa. For example, South Africa’s black majority and Indian minority still earn far less than their white counterparts, even after 20 years of African National Congress rule.13 Even though Nelson Mandela tried his hardest to fix the corruption and poverty in South Africa, it still remained.
10Epatko, Larisa. “How Nelson Mandela Survived His Years in Isolated South African Jail.” PBS. July 18, 2013. Accessed December 07, 2017. https://www.pbs.org/newshour/world/nelson-mandela-1.
11“Nelson Mandela.” Biography.com. September 06, 2017. Accessed December 07, 2017. https://www.biography.com/people/nelson-mandela-9397017.
12The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica. “African National Congress (ANC).” Encyclopædia Britannica. June 16, 2017. Accessed December 07, 2017. https://www.britannica.com/topic/African-National-Congress.
Picture © Museum Africa / Africa Media Online
Prejudice is still a major problem in South Africa. Even the legal barriers are lifted, their is still a racial line that exists. In 2012, a survey was conducted where they found out that 43 percent of south africans don’t interact with someone of another ethnicity.13 Most of the time when there is interaction between different ethnic groups, it’ll be on a professional level.
The apartheid left some trust issues between different racial groups. The apartheid was devastating to many of South Africa. Especially to Non white South Africans as they struggled to live a peaceful and equal life.The apartheid finally came to an end with the help of the the activist and other countries. Even though the apartheid is over, South Africa still have many issues to fix before they can become a country of equality.
13Pinzow, Daniel. “The Effects After the End of Apartheid.” Synonym. Accessed December 07, 2017. http://classroom.synonym.com/bad-effects-after-end-apartheid-8462245.html.