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Correspondence: Nelson Mandela and the Black Consciousness Movement
16 February 2014
Following the publication of the latest edition of Socialist Democracy Duen De contacted us to comment about the interaction between Mandela and the younger militants of the Black consciousness movement. He includes a short excerpt in Mandela’s own words.
In 1976, Mandela got some new cellmates;
the leaders of the Soweto student movement - followers of Steve Biko and
his black consciousness movement.
Reflections in Prison
A collection of Essays by Robben Island Prisoners
Whither the Black Consciousness Movement?
- by Nelson Mandela
Certainly the government welcomed its emergence in the hope that it would ultimately neutralise or even kill any influence of communism and liberalism in black politics.
Despite its ten years of existence as a
legal movement, the BCM never embarked on a serious drive for funds from
the black public - yet it was swimming in money. Almost all its funds
came from external sources.
BCM members have strong objections to the
use of Afrikaans, but South Africa has almost three million Afrikaners
who will no longer be oppressors after liberation but a powerful minority
of ordinary citizens whose co-operation and good-will will be needed in
the reconstruction of the country. One can think of no better way of turning
South Africa into turmoil than to implement this proposal to end Africaans
instruction. Precisely because Afrikaans is the language of the oppressor
we should encourage our people to learn it.
It wouldn't surprise me if the ANC helped the Vorster govt destroy the BCM by snitching.
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