Twentieth-Century South Africa / Edition 1

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This book provides a stimulating introduction to the history of South Africa in the twentieth century. It draws on the rich and lively tradition of radical history writing on that country and, to a greater extent than previous accounts, weaves economic and cultural history into the political narrative. Apartheid and industrialization, especially mining, are central themes, as is the rise of nationalism in the Afrikaner and African communities. But the author also emphasizes the neglected significance of rural experiences and local identities in shaping political consciousness. The roles played by such key figures as Smuts, Verwoerd, de Klerk, Plaatje, and Mandela are explored, while recent historiographical trends are reflected in analyses of rural protest, white cultural politics, the vitality of black urban life, and environmental decay. The book concludes with an analysis of black reactions to apartheid, the rise of the ANC, and an assessment of the chances of a stable political future for a post-apartheid South Africa.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"William Beinart's meticulous, lively introduction to the story of South African people through the twentieth century is an excellent place to start. The book is at once immensely readable, informative and timely, coinciding in South Africa with one of those rare, fleeting moments when there is a shared feeling of human liberation."--New Internationalist

"[This book] admirably combine[s] impressive summaries of the leading research with historiographical debate and an emphasis on history as an interpretive discipline."--Southern African Review of Books

"One of the revelations of this very readable book is how Beinart skillfully weaves the black experience into the picture."--Good Book Guide

"This book effectively connects the political narrative to broad social changes and movements. It also points to scholarly interpretations and debates. A very effective text and introduction to South African politics."--Gregory S. Crider, Wingate University

From Barnes & Noble
This stimulating introduction to South Africa examines both the destructive and dynamic forces which have shaped the country's current economic, cultural, and political landscape. Explore the roles Nelson Mandela, F.W. de Klerk, Jan Smuts, and other historical figures played in apartheid, industrialization, and nationalism. The study also provides an assessment of the chances for a stable political future for a post-apartheid South Africa.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780192893185
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 11/28/2001
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 432
  • Product dimensions: 7.70 (w) x 5.10 (h) x 1.13 (d)

Meet the Author

William Beinart is Professor of History, and Fellow of St Anthony's College, Oxford. He has taught at Bristol and studied at the University of Cape Town and the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, and has held research fellowships at Rhodes and Yale Universities. He was joint editor of the Journal of Southern African Studies from 1982 to 1987 and has been chair of its editorial board since 1992.

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Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgements
List of Maps, Tables, and Figures
Introduction: Conquest, the State, and Society 1
Pt. I A State without a Nation, 1880-1948
1 African Rural Life and Migrant Labour 9
2 Economic and Social Change on the Settler Farmlands 36
3 War, Reconstruction, and the State from the 1890s to the 1920s 62
4 Black Responses and Black Resistance 88
5 The Settler State in Depression and War, 1930-1948 114
Pt. II Afrikaner Power and the Rise of Mass Opposition, 1948-1994
6 Apartheid, 1948-1961 143
7 Economy and Society in the 1960s and 1970s 170
8 Farms, Homelands, and Displaced Urbanization, the late 1950s to the 1980s 201
9 Black Political Struggles and the Reform Era of P. W. Botha, 1973-1984 228
10 Insurrection, Fragmentation, and Negotiations, 1984-1994 254
Pt. III The New South Africa, 1994-2000
11 A New Politics: From Rainbow Nation to African Authority 289
12 Economic Uncertainties: Redistribution, Class Formation, and Growth 309
13 Crime, Culture, and Reconciliation in the New South Africa 328
App. 1: Notes on Tables and Figures 348
App. 2: Tables 353
App. 3: Figures 356
Bibliography 361
References 384
Index 392
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