Economic Apartheid in South Africa

Posted: December 9, 2016 in Things that aren't what they seem
Tags: , , , ,

 

AmaZulu: The Children of Heaven

Directed by Hanan Majid and Richard York
(2006)

Film Review

AmaZulu is about Mr Mtshali, the inspiring principal of Velabahleke High School in Umlazi Township in Kwazulu Natal province (near Durban).

Although racial apartheid ended in 1994, economic apartheid persists to the present day. The abject poverty in Umlazi Township is a prime example. The film profiles a dozen or so students, most of whom live in simple shacks without electricity or running water.

Most come from single parent families disrupted by HIV, alcohol and other side effects of poverty. For many the midday meal at school is their only food.

As the filmmakers make clear, many of the students turn to Mtshali the principal for emotional support and parental guidance they don’t receive at home.

What I find most striking about the documentary is the number of students who talk about the importance of education for improving their circumstances. For most, their primary dream is to earn enough money to provide their mothers with a house (as opposed to a shack) to live in.

Third world poverty is always the result of third world dispossession – driving indigenous people off their land and depriving them of any means of supporting themselves. “Development” in the third world is a euphemism for confiscation and privatization of publicly owned resources.

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s