By Rebekah Lee
A key mechanism of apartheid in South Africa used to be the set of regulations put on the routine of Africans; particularly, African girls have been topic to lives of day-by-day surveillance and hugely regulated housing, employment and mobility. right here Lee explores the lives and tales of 3 generations of African ladies in Cape city throughout the apartheid (1948-94) and post-apartheid classes. via lifestyles histories and a wealth of proof, Lee considers how African ladies otherwise skilled apartheid, supplying an intimate account in their makes an attempt to find "home" within the city environment. many of the suggestions of cost African ladies crafted over 5 a long time offer a compelling portrait of version, resilience and alter. Drawing jointly views from anthropology, historical past, human geography and improvement reports, African ladies and Apartheid can be necessary to someone with pursuits in South African tradition and society, gender, urbanization, the African kin, oral background and reminiscence.
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Extra info for African Women and Apartheid: Migration and Settlement in Urban South Africa (International Library of African Studies, Volume 25)
These smaller instances were testimony to the minor battles African women in the townships engaged in on a far more frequent basis than they did marches and large-scale protests. Sometimes resistance entailed merely evading officials intent on arresting them or ignoring orders to leave the area, as Grace Madikane did, or burning the symbols of their restricted lives. Regina Mhlekwa recalled: ‘there were like these big bins and people would just throw in their passes. ’116 The sense of community provided by the township largely shaped the type of everyday resistance that was possible.
The focus then extends outwards to the built environment. Charting the history of home improvements (chapter three) presents an unlikely, yet fruitful, avenue of analysis. Tracing the physical reconstruction of ‘home’ provides candid snapshots of women’s attempts to balance the harsh realities of African housing policy in apartheid Cape Town with their own developing housing designs. Chapter four examines women’s ‘energy histories’ as another pathway to understanding women’s evolving material and emotional engagement with their urban environment.
Regina Mhlekwa also marched to Cape Town that day, though she explained it was because she wanted to support her husband, who was one of the march’s leaders. But her activism was evident in other, perhaps more individualized ways: she burned her pass and frequently helped hide members of the African National Congress (ANC) when they came to Cape Town, giving them clothes to disguise their appearance so that the police would not recognize them. These smaller instances were testimony to the minor battles African women in the townships engaged in on a far more frequent basis than they did marches and large-scale protests.
African Women and Apartheid: Migration and Settlement in Urban South Africa (International Library of African Studies, Volume 25) by Rebekah Lee