Benutzereinstellungen

Neue Veranstaltungshinweise

Southern Africa

Es wurden keine neuen Veranstaltungshinweise in der letzten Woche veröffentlicht

Kommende Veranstaltungen

Southern Africa | History

Keine kommenden Veranstaltungen veröffentlicht

The 1976 Struggle and the Emancipation of the Future

category southern africa | history | opinion / analysis author Samstag Dezember 06, 2014 23:58author by Bongani Maponyane - TAAC, ZACFauthor email tokologo.aac at gmail dot com Report this post to the editors

Developing Self-determined and Self-motivated Youth Despite Looming Fate

The massacre of South African school children in 1976 – for protesting for instruction in their native languages and for a proper curriculum – continues to be remembered and to influence us today. It showed the brutality of the apartheid state and it left scars still felt by people today.

The challenges faced by youth today are different to that experienced in 1976. This does not mean everything has changed. We need to look to history to learn about and not to repeat mistakes made. But we also look to history to provide us with inspiration. We need to revisit the spirit of the youth of 1976 and copy their courage – to overcome these issues facing our young people today. We need to be the change that we want to see.
Hector Pieterson (1964 – June 16, 1976). Killed at age 12 when the police opened fire on protesting students. 16 June stands as a symbol of resistance to the brutality of the apartheid government.
Hector Pieterson (1964 – June 16, 1976). Killed at age 12 when the police opened fire on protesting students. 16 June stands as a symbol of resistance to the brutality of the apartheid government.

The 1976 Struggle and the Emancipation of the Future:
Developing Self-determined and Self-motivated Youth Despite Looming Fate

Bongani Maponyane

The massacre of South African school children in 1976 continues to be remembered and to influence us today. It showed the brutality of the apartheid state and it left scars still felt by people today.

In the period 1970-75 the number of black schoolchildren in the state system increased by 160%. However, the Bantu Education system and economic crisis meant already low apartheid expenditure could not meet the increasing need.

This was also the time of Steve Bantu Biko, a key intellectual influence through the Black Consciousness Movement (BCM). The rising black trade union movement provided another source of inspiration after the defeats of the 1960s.

Black education faced a crisis: low funding plus a rising consciousness of black struggle amongst school students. These students felt the system unfair and highly oppressive. They demanded the right to a proper education, adequately equipped and staffed.

These changes, they said, would foster positive developments in their lives and those of their families. It must be remembered that this was the period when South Africa’s unemployment crisis – still with us – began.

Students protested for instruction in their native languages, against the effort to use Afrikaans as the main language of education and for a proper curriculum.

In short, the changes they wanted were mental, social and not just about physical resources; the black working class was rejecting the system that kept it in bondage.

On 16 June 1976, students in Soweto, Johannesburg, decided to march to the Orlando Stadium to hold a mass rally. The march was initially peaceful and disciplined and sought to show disgust with the current repressive political, economic and educational systems.

Little did they know the violence they would face that day – the violence of the state through a section of its armed forces. The students, refusing to obey a police order to disperse, were fired upon indiscriminately: Hector Peterson, a small boy shot down, became the symbol of hundreds killed that day and in operations that followed. Prominent student leaders were tracked, structures were repressed; a general strike was called and the revolt lasted countrywide for many months.

We continue to pay homage to those brave young people whose courage paved the way for this and for future generations. It was their sacrifice that helped create the momentum that would result in important political changes in South Africa some 18 years later.

Have the youth of the current period of parliamentary democracy kept the radicalism and spirit of sacrifice of the 1976 generation? Or has 1994 served to phase this out, with media and market indoctrination (some of the main tools of ruling class propaganda)? Capitalist tendencies, such as mass consumerism, have engulfed black working class communities and are widespread through the use of modern technology.

Also, our youth are being ravaged by drug abuse, crime, gangs, HIV and AIDS which claims thousands of lives daily, in a context of massive unemployment. School dropout rates are high and rising, as is teen pregnancy; the prospects for finding work after school are dismal. Apartheid is gone, but its legacy remains in the townships.

Thus the challenges faced by youth today are different to that experienced in 1976. This does not mean everything has changed. We need to look to history to learn about and not to repeat mistakes made. The 1976 revolt lacked a clear direction – this is one reason it failed, despite its heroism.

But we also look to history to provide us with inspiration. We need to revisit the spirit of the youth of 1976 and copy their courage – to overcome these issues facing our young people today. We need to be the change that we want to see.

Not all our youth are blindfolded by ruling class propaganda. There are those that are trying to take control of their destinies. They are struggling to survive, but if we use the correct tools of struggle – ideas and action – we can create the change we want to see.

This means not falling for the lies of the system – consumerism, elections, dog-eat-dog – but fighting for a free society; one without bosses, without poverty, without oppression, based on human dignity and self-management.


Writer’s comment: Thanks to comrades Mzee and Lucien for encouraging me to write an article at once touching, but also comparing the past and present.

Verwandter Link: http://zabalaza.net
This page can be viewed in
English Italiano Deutsch
Neste 8 de Março, levantamos mais uma vez a nossa voz e os nossos punhos pela vida das mulheres!

Southern Africa | History | en

Mo 26 Aug, 19:19

browse text browse image

textCPSA veteran Alan Lipman's biography online 22:50 Di 10 Apr by Alan Lipman 0 comments

The Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Federation (ZACF) of southern Africa is proud to present an online version of Alan Lipman's autobiography.

imageBill Andrews and South Africa’s Revolutionary Syndicalists Apr 05 by Lucien van der Walt 1 comments

If W. H. "Bill" Andrews (1870- 1950) is remembered today, it is usually as a founder and leader of the Communist Party of South Africa (CPSA, today the SACP). In that role, he served as party chair, member of the executive of the Communist International, leading South African trade unionist, visitor to the Soviet Union, and defendant in the trial of communists that followed 1946 black miners' strike.

imageOur History of Struggle: the 1980s “Workerist-Populist” Debate Revisited Dez 09 by Warren McGregor 0 comments

Today the terms “populism” and “workerism” are widely thrown about in South African political circles. Often, these terms and others (“syndicalism,” “ultra-left,” “counter-revolutionary,” “anti-majoritarian” …) have no meaning: they are just labels used to silence critics. SA Communist Party (SACP) leaders do this often. But in the 1980s, “populism” and “workerism” referred to two rival positions battling for the soul of the militant unions.

These debates, thirty years on, remain very relevant: let us revisit them, and learn. Today’s radical National Union of Metalworkers of SA (NUMSA) was part of the “workerist” camp, while its key rival, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) was identified with “populism.” The early battles over the direction of the Congress of SA Trade Unions (COSATU) still echo today, although there is no longer a clear “workerist” camp.

imageAnti-militarist United Fronts and Italy’s “Red week”, 1914 Sep 03 by Jonathan Payn 0 comments

The United Front tactic – aimed at uniting masses of workers in action and winning Communist leadership for the working class – was adopted as policy by the Communist International (Comintern) in 1921 and will be discussed later in this series. However, there are important examples of working class unity in action which predate Comintern policy and bear relevance to the united fronts discussion. One often-cited example is the united front to defend the gains of the February Revolution from a military coup in Russia in 1917, which will be discussed in the next article in this series.

Before looking at this, however, there is another example of proletarian unity in action – that didn’t seek to win Communist leadership – which warrants attention; that of a revolutionary worker-peasant alliance. This conception of united front action found expression in Italy’s anti-militarist “red blocs” and it is to these that we now turn.

First published in issue 87 of Workers World News Part 1: NUMSA and the ‘United Front Against Neoliberalism’
Part 3: The 1917 Russian Revolution and United Front
Part 4: United Working Class Action and the Workers’ Council Movement in Germany, 1920-1923

imageRemembering and Learning from the Past: The 1976 Uprising and the African Working Class Jun 18 by Zabalaza 0 comments

This year [2006] marks the 30th anniversary of the 1976 Soweto uprising in South Africa, which marked the start of the fall of apartheid, and inspired activists worldwide. African working youth played a leading role, and their sacrifices showed us that ordinary people can make a difference to the injustices of our world. Revolutionaries should commemorate this struggle, but also learn from its failings.

imageGet Rich or Lie Trying: Why ANC Millionaire Julius Malema posed as a Radical Mär 06 by Tina Sizovuka and Lucien van der Walt 0 comments

This article aims to explain, from an anarchist / syndicalist perspective, the rapid rise and fall of Julius Malema, the controversial and corrupt multi-millionaire leader of South Africa’s ruling party, the African National Congress’s (ANC’s) “youth league” (ANCYL). It is demonstrated that Malema’s posturing as radical champion of the black poor was simply a means to an end: rising higher in the ranks of the ANC, in order to access bigger state tenders and higher paying political office. The larger political implications of the Malema affair are also considered, especially the role of the ANC – as a vehicle for the accumulation of wealth and power by the rising black elite, which is centred on the state.

more >>

textCPSA veteran Alan Lipman's biography online Apr 10 allied to ZACF (southern Africa) 0 comments

The Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Federation (ZACF) of southern Africa is proud to present an online version of Alan Lipman's autobiography.

© 2005-2019 Anarkismo.net. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by Anarkismo.net. [ Disclaimer | Privacy ]