Apartheid : A History

  • Hardback
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Product details

  • Hardback | 256 pages
  • 150 x 230mm
  • Grafton
  • London, United Kingdom
  • illustrations, maps, bibliog , index
  • 0246130644
  • 9780246130648

Review Text

A concise history of the development of apartheid beginning with the initial settlements of the Dutch in southernmost Africa in the late-16th century. The various sides in the conflict among Africans, colonialists and English imperialism are well presented here. The story is complex, tragic and often bloody. The Afrikaners' current racial policies, says Lapping, can be seen as the distillation of more than 300 years of persecution, as well as a fervid nationalism arising from their singular spiritual and intellectual isolation. They were either at wax with the native population or the English or both. The land that they originally settled was largely unappealing to others except as a way station for ships making the long journey around the Cape of Good Hope. The Afrikaners were mostly farmers who were driven farther inland by their fierce independence and dislike of the English. Today, the Trek is revered, as are other memorials, as their idea of nationhood. The British interned Afrikaner women and children in the Boer War in concentration camps, starving them in the hopes of persuading their men to surrender. With the discovery of gold and diamonds and later, with the growth of industry, the dependence on black African labor mushroomed. However, the willingness to share power never did. The effort to devise policies that would insure the survival of European (read Afrikaner) culture, yet deal with the increasing black population was to test the political sagacity of all concerned. The less militant of the racists eventually lost out to the hard-liners; over the years the country's strife has deepened as equality was denied. The social, economic and racial policies that have created the nightmare of South Africa are cogently laid out here. Recommended for anyone who wants a deeper understanding than is usually available. And all done in 200 pages. (Kirkus Reviews)
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