What effect did apartheid have on the lives of black South Africans?

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David P Share
Jun 15, 2016


It affected every aspect of their lives ensuring their impoverishment.


Apartheid laws put in place a structure which legalised, within the warped rationale of the regime, a society based on racism.

The population was classified according to race. Being black meant you were denied any basic human rights. This included no access to proper education, health or housing. They had no political rights such as the right to protest or vote.

Laws such as the Pass Laws and creation of the Homelands determined where blacks could live. Inter-racial marriage or sexual relations were prohibited.

Economically blacks were denied the right of association such as trade unions or the right to strike or demonstrate. There was no health and safety protection and so working conditions were appalling. This made South Africa very attractive for foreign investment.

Any form of opposition was brutally suppressed and executions were commonplace as well as beatings, torture and murder by white police death squads.

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