Apartheid and South Africa

A colorful mural painted on the side of a building depicts the faces of three men and one woman.

A mural in District 6, Cape Town, South Africa depicts anti-apartheid activists Nelson Mandela, Steve Biko, Cissie Gool, and Imam Haron. (Image courtesy of Sharon on Flickr. License CC BY-NC-SA.)


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As Taught In

Spring 2020



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Course Description

Course Features

Course Description

This course introduces students to the spatial, legal, economic, social and political structures that created apartheid in South Africa, and to the factors that led to the collapse of the racist order. We will examine the many forms of Black oppression and, also, the various forms of resistance to apartheid. Some of the themes we will explore include industrialization and the formation of the Black working classes; the constructions of race, ethnicities, and sexualities; land alienation and rural struggles; township poverty and violence; Black education; the African National Congress; and the Black Consciousness Movement. 

Related Content

Kenda Mutongi. 21H.266 Apartheid and South Africa. Spring 2020. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, https://ocw.mit.edu. License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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