South Africa.docx

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Political Science
Chrystal Chang

 Why study this case?  Relatively peaceful transition from aparteid  Two kinds of politics o Apartheid: Authoritarian separatist racist regime  Made by the ruling minority  Favored South Africans o Democracy  Ended the ethnic war with “ballots and not bullets”  It is part of the rising developing powers (BRICS)  The legacy of the apartheid is there w/ some problems: o Corruption o Pandemic HIV o Social Tension o Still faces challenges of postcolonialism o Dealing w/ tradeoffs between equality and freedom o Managing consequences of first 3  Geography and Demography  In a harsh and isolated region  Much of western South Africa remains unable to grow crops  Soil quality is poor  49 Million inhabitants  Dramatic birth rate decline/25 yrs  Very diverse population, not just black and white  There is ethnic division within both blacks and whites  Eleven recognized languages by the constitution o Language is a divisive factor  Development of the state  Dutch Rule o Domination began in the 17 thc o Boers took control of the fertile land in the cape of good hope o British gain formal control of it in 1814  Boer Migration o Boers began to feel threatened so they moved to interior South Africa o They faced opposition from Bantus but eventually defeated them despite long bloody wars o This was short lived b/c Brits found diamond deposits and gold in the area where Boers lived  Defeat of Afrikaners in Boer Wars o Brit took control of their city o Used concentration camps o The Union of South Africa united the Boers and the English  Renaissance of Afrikaner Power o English and Afrikaners worked together to create a good gov’t o Native land act of 1913 prevented blacks from owning land except reserves o Large amount of black discrimination o The National Party was the one responsible for the borders that made the apartheid era, and it was elected into office in 1949  Apartheid Era o Two goals:  Consolidating Afrikaner power  Eliminating all of black participation in the South’s politics o The Population Registration Act of 1950 divided south Africa into 4 racial categories o African National Congress sought suffrage for blacks. At first they were nonviolent, led by Nelson Mandela’s nonviolent civil disobedience o Repression created 3 problems:  1. Black opposition and foundation of more radical organizations than the ANC  2. ANC and PAC were banned  3. Government slaughter of protesters made the ANC militarize against the government  Transition to Democracy o 5 Factors to explain the political shift:  1. Demographic pressure and growing unrest  2. Economic Decline  3. Internal Reforms  4. Changing international context  5. Skilled leadership  Political Institutions  The Constitution o Had to protect white rights but give black rights too o Tries to manage minority and majority concerns equally  Affirmative Action  Very detailed on how/why individuals can be detained o Protection of property  Branches of Government  3 Capitals  The President o Capital in Pretoria o No division between head of state and head of government, but appointed in the same manner as all the others (lower house and elected from National Assembly) o Stronger than the prime minister  The Legislature o Capital in Cape Town o Bicameral parliament  Lower house is the National Assembly  Electing and removing president, preparing and passing legislation, and approving the national budget  Upper house is the National Council of Provinces  Much weaker than the NA  The Judiciary o Capital in Bloemfontein o 11 members w/ 12 year terms and are appointed by the president o Has been activist and independent  Electoral System o Proportional representation system
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