'From confusion to Lusaka' : the youth revolt in Sekhukhuneland

Title'From confusion to Lusaka' : the youth revolt in Sekhukhuneland
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1993
AuthorsW.M.J.van Kessel
Secondary TitleJournal of Southern African studies
Pagination593 - 614
Date Published1993///
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Publication Languageeng
KeywordsAfrica, children, Lebowa, political action, protest, Rural, South Africa, United Democratic Front, youth, youth organizations

After a series of rebellions in the 1950s, the bantustans of South Africa remained largely quiescent. Only after the formation of the UDF in 1983 did rural areas once more become the scene of widespread protest and resistance, as revolt spread from the townships to remote villages in the bantustans. However, rural organization was a much neglected issue in the programme of the UDF's national leadership. The process of rural mobilization in the Transvaal bantustans owed more to local youth initiatives than to any planning or coordination on the part of the UDF leadership. This article examines the role of the UDF in the homeland of Lebowa in Northern Transvaal, focusing in particular on youth movements in Sekhukhuneland. It shows that the original ideals of 'serving the community' with a millenarian perspective of a new order blended with a reign of terror, which profoundly upset the relationships between parents and children, teachers and students, and students mutually. The legacy of this extraordinary period of youth mobilization in the 1980s gave the ANC a difficult start after its unbanning in February 1990. It could not simply build on the foundations laid by the UDF, which in the rural parts of the Northern Transvaal had become largely associated with rebellious youth. Notes, ref., sum

Citation Key2192