The curriculum Freedom in Our Lifetime: South Africa's Struggle explores the history of South Africa, the development of a race-based society, and the decision by some members of the anti-apartheid movement to use violence to oppose the government's policies.

Videos for Readings: The videos below follow the outline of the printed curriculum unit. The headings correspond to the headings in the student readings.

Videos for Lessons accompany lessons in the teacher's guide of the printed curriculum unit.

Scholars Online: Videos for Readings

Freedom in Our Lifetime: South Africa's Struggle


Newell Stultz
Newell Stultz
Brown University

Jeff Guy
Jeff Guy
University of KwaZulu-Natal

Fatima Meer
Fatima Meer
University of KwaZulu-Natal

Fatima Meer
William Freund
University of KwaZulu-Natal

Fatima Meer
Dennis Davis
High Court of South Africa

Introduction: A Negotiated Revolution

What were the main racial categories in South Africa? [Newell Stultz - 1:58]

Part I: Precolonial and Colonial South Africa

Who lived in South Africa before the Dutch arrived? [Jeff Guy - 2:23]

The Arrival of Outsiders

Who are the Afrikaners? [Newell Stultz - 1:43]

How did white colonization affect African societies? [Jeff Guy - 1:13]

How did Africans respond to white colonization? [Jeff Guy - 1:41]

What were the different ways Africans resisted colonization? [Jeff Guy - 2:54]

What are the different interpretations of the Mfecane? [Jeff Guy - 3:09]

What happened at the Battle of Blood River? [Jeff Guy - 3:43]

How was the Battle of Blood River significant during apartheid? [Jeff Guy - 0:54]

How did Indian people come to South Africa? [William Freund - 1:01]

What was life like for Indian indentured servants? [William Freund - 1:17]

The Mineral Revolution

How did the discovery of diamonds and gold affect South Africa? [Jeff Guy - 2:17]

What was the migrant labor system? [Jeff Guy - 2:22]

How did the migrant labor system develop? [William Freund - 3:51]

How did the migrant labor system change how Africans lived? [Jeff Guy - 2:31]

Where did migrant workers come from? [William Freund - 1:14]

What was the role of Africans in the Anglo-Boer War? [Jeff Guy - 2:21]

How was the Union of South Africa formed? [Jeff Guy - 1:17]

Part II: Apartheid and its Opposition

What is the African National Congress? [Newell Stultz - 2:19]

What were passbooks? [William Freund - 1:38]

How did Indian workers in Natal Province oppose the government? [William Freund - 2:51]

The Rise of Apartheid

What are the origins of Afrikaner nationalism? [Newell Stultz - 2:31]

What were the economic reasons for apartheid? [William Freund - 2:14]

What was life like after the National Party came to power in 1948? [Fatima Meer - 1:53]

How was apartheid different from other systems of racial division? [Newell Stultz - 1:29]

How did apartheid affect the daily lives of Africans? [Fatima Meer - 1:36]

How was life for Indians different or similar to life for Africans under white rule? [Fatima Meer - 2:57]

How did apartheid keep people separate? [Newell Stultz - 2:43]

Why did the government restrict black settlement in the cities? [William Freund - 1:14]

Why did most whites in South Africa support the government? [Newell Stultz - 2:19]


In January 1949, there was an interracial conflict between Indians and Africans in Durban, South Africa. How did whites instigate violence between these two groups? [Fatima Meer - 2:22]

Why did you form the Durban and District Women's League? [Fatima Meer - 3:20]

What was the Federation of South African Women and why was it created? [Fatima Meer - 2:03]

How did some whites oppose apartheid? [Newell Stultz - 0:53]

Why did the government "ban" people? [Fatima Meer - 2:24]

What were the homelands? [Newell Stultz - 1:41]

Radicalism Grows

June 1961: The Moment of Decision

How did Sharpeville affect the anti-apartheid movement? [Newell Stultz - 2:20]

Epilogue: Becoming South Africa

What was the Rivonia Trial? [Fatima Meer - 1:11]


How did the Soweto uprising contribute to the end of apartheid? [Fatima Meer - 2:39]


How did international opinion help to end apartheid? [Newell Stultz - 1:06]

How did economic troubles weaken apartheid in the 1980s? [William Freund - 3:04]

What factors contributed to the end of apartheid? [Newell Stultz - 1:44]

What were your experiences in South Africa? [Newell Stultz - 1:46]

Post-Apartheid South Africa

What was the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC)? [Newell Stultz - 1:57]

How was media used to involve the public in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission? [Dennis Davis - 1:28]

How does the new South African constitution reflect human rights issues? [Dennis Davis - 1:21]

How have things changed since the early 1990s? [Dennis Davis - 1:55]

How have things changed since the early 1990s? [Fatima Meer - 2:03]

How has the end of apartheid affected the economic situations of South Africans? [Newell Stultz - 1:00]

What challenges exist in South Africa today? [William Freund - 1:16]

What political and legal challenges exist in South Africa today? [Dennis Davis - 1:50]