South Africa

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National Flag of South Africa Country: South Africa Proportions: 2:3 South African Flag Description: The flag of South Africa consists of two horizontal stripes of equal width – red on the top and blue on the bottom. The red and blue stripes are separated by a green middle stripe which is bordered in white and splits into a horizontal Y. On the left side of the flag there is a black isosceles triangle which is outlined in yellow. South African Flag Meaning:

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Although the colors have no official meaning attached to them the South African flag incorporates the colors black, green and yellow of Nelson Mandela’s political party, the African National Congress and the former Boer republics flags (red, white, and blue). The Y shape represents the convergence of South Africa’s diverse society and the desire for unity. The South African flag is basically made up of former South African flags and the past meanings of the colors were Red for bloodshed, blue of open blue skies, green for the land, black for the black people, white for the European people and yellow for the natural resources such as gold.

South African Flag History: The South African flag was adopted on April 27, 1994 after Nelson Mandela was elected President. A new national flag was adopted to signify the dawn of a new democratic South Africa and to reflect the country’s political transformation. It is one of the world’s newest flags. South Africa gained independence from Britain on In 1652, a century and a half after the discovery of the Cape Sea Route, Jan van Riebeeck established a refreshment station at the Cape of Good Hope, at what would become Cape Town,[20] on behalf of the Dutch East India Company.

The Dutch transported slaves from Indonesia, Madagascar, and India as labour for the colonists in Cape Town. As they expanded east, the Dutch settlers met the southwesterly migrating Xhosa people in the region of the Fish River. A series of wars, called the Cape Frontier Wars, ensued, caused by their conflicting land and livestock interests. The discovery of diamonds and later gold triggered the 19th-century conflict known as the Anglo-Boer War, as the Boers (original Dutch,Flemish, German and French settlers) and the British fought for the control of the South African mineral wealth.

Cape Town became a British colony in 1806. European settlement expanded during the 1820s as the Boers and the British 1820 Settlers claimed land in the north and east of the country. Conflicts arose among the Xhosa, Zulu and Afrikaner groups who competed for territory. Great Britain took over the Cape of Good Hope area in 1795, to prevent it from falling under control of the French First Republic, which hadinvaded the Dutch Republic. Given its standing interests in Australia and India, Great Britain wanted to use Cape Town as an interim port for its merchants’ long voyages.

The British returned Cape Town to the Dutch in 1803, but soon afterwards the Dutch East India Company declared bankruptcy. The British annexed the Cape Colony in 1806. The British continued the frontier wars against the Xhosa, pushing the eastern frontier through a line of forts established along the Fish River. They consolidated the territory by encouraging British settlement. Due to pressure ofabolitionist societies in Britain, the British parliament stopped its global slave trade with the passage of the Slave Trade Act 1807, then abolished slavery in all its colonies with the Slavery Abolition Act 1833.

Boers in combat (1881) In the first two decades of the 19th century, the Zulu people grew in power and expanded their territory under their leader, Shaka. [21] Shaka’s warfare led indirectly to the Mfecane (“Crushing”) that devastated and depopulated the inland plateau in the early 1820s. [22][23] An offshoot of the Zulu, the Matabele people created a larger empire under their king Mzilikazi, including large parts of the highveld. During the 1830s, approximately 12,000 Boers (later known as Voortrekkers), departed from the Cape Colony, where they had been subjected to British control.

They migrated to the future Natal, Orange Free State and Transvaal regions. The Boers founded the Boer Republics: the South African Republic (now Gauteng, Limpopo, Mpumalanga and North West provinces) and the Orange Free State (Free State). The discovery of diamonds in 1867 and gold in 1884 in the interior encouraged economic growth and immigration, the so called Mineral Revolution. This intensified the European-South African subjugation of the indigenous people. The struggle to control these important economic resources was a factor between Europeans and the indigenous population, and also between the Boers and the British. 24] Boer Wars The Boer Republics successfully resisted British encroachments during the First Boer War (1880–1881) using guerrilla warfare tactics, which were well suited to local conditions. The British returned with greater numbers, more experience, and new strategy in the Second Boer War(1899–1902), which they won. 20th century Main article: South Africa under apartheid Within the country, anti-British policies among white South Africans focused on independence.

During the Dutch and British colonial years,racial segregation was mostly informal, though some legislation were enacted to control the settlement and movement of native people, including the Native Location Act of 1879 and the system of pass laws. [25][26][27] Power was held by the ethnic European colonists. South Africans at Moyale, after the Italian retreat. World War II, 1941. After four years of negotiating, the South Africa Act 1909 created the Union of South Africa from the Cape and Natal colonies, as well as the republics of Orange Free State and Transvaal, on 31 May 1910, eight years after the end of the Second Boer War.

The newly created Union of South Africa was a dominion of the British Empire. The Natives’ Land Act of 1913 severely restricted the ownership of land by blacks; at that stage natives controlled only 7% of the country. The amount of land reserved for indigenous peoples was later marginally increased. [28] In the Boer republics,[29] from as early as the Pretoria Convention (chapter XXVI),[30] and subsequent South African governments, the legislature passed legally institutionalisedsegregation, later known as apartheid.

The government established three racial classes: white, coloured (people of Asian or mixed racial ancestry), and black, with rights and restrictions for each. In 1931 the union was effectively granted independence from the United Kingdom with the passage of the Statute of Westminster. In 1934, the South African Party and National Party merged to form the United Party, seeking reconciliation between Afrikaners and English-speaking “Whites”. In 1939 the party split over the entry of the Union into World War II as an ally of the United Kingdom, a move which the National Party followers strongly opposed. For use by white persons” – sign from the apartheid era. In 1948, the National Party was elected to power. It strengthened the racial segregation begun under Dutch and British colonial rule, and subsequent South African governments since the Union was formed[citation needed]. The Nationalist Government classified all peoples into three races, developed rights and limitations for each, such as pass laws and residential restrictions[citation needed]. The white minority controlled the vastly larger black majority. The system of segregation became known collectively as apartheid.

While the White minority enjoyed the highest standard of living in all of Africa, comparable to First World Western nations, the Black majority remained disadvantaged by almost every standard, including income, education, housing, and life expectancy. On 31 May 1961, following a whites-only referendum, the country became a republic and left the Commonwealth. Queen Elizabeth IIceased to be head of state, and the last Governor-General became State President. Despite opposition both within and outside the country, the government legislated for a continuation of apartheid.

Apartheid became increasingly controversial, and some Western nations and institutions began to boycott doing business with South Africa because of its racial policies and oppression of civil rights. International sanctions, divestment of holdings by investors accompanied growing unrest and oppression within South Africa. The government harshly oppressed resistance movements, and violence became widespread, with anti-apartheid activists usingstrikes, marches, protests, and sabotage by bombing and other means. The African National Congress (ANC) was a major resistance movement.

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