JCH 2017 Volume 42 Issue 1

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  • ItemOpen Access
    One country, three colonial legacies: the politics of colonialism, capitalism and development in the pre- and post-colonial Cameroon
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Lekane, Gillo Momo; Asuelime, Lucky
    Cameroon is usually misconceived of as a former French colony due to its geographical location which is at the intersection of what used to be called French West Africa and French Equatorial Africa. This misconception clouds the country’s triple colonial heritage that has shaped and continues to shape Cameroon’s historical path and its agro-political landscape. The colonial heritage of Cameroon contributes to an understanding of key socio-economic, political and developmental challenges the country has been facing and continues to face. This article discusses the history of Cameroon’s early contacts with Europeans (Germans, French and British in particular) and how these encounters influenced and shaped the country’s economic history. It highlights how colonialism was a vehicle used to incept capitalism in the country with an emphasis on cash crop farming. The article also discusses the legacy of these heritages and the strategies that were successively adopted to address economic development challenges.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Book review / Boekbespreking: Composite warfare: the conduct of successful ground operations in Africa
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Solomon, Hussein
  • ItemOpen Access
    Book review / Boekbespreking: If we must die: an autobiography of a former commander of Umkhonto We Sizwe
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Twala, Chitja
  • ItemOpen Access
    Decolonization in southern Africa: reflections on the Namibian and South African cases
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Saunders, Chris
    While the term “decolonization” is now applied in many different situations, with different meanings, its original and prime usage relates to the process leading to the ending of colonial rule. Though there is a large literature on that process, we lack a detailed overview of the way it unfolded in Southern Africa. This article focuses on two countries in that region, Namibia and South Africa, and raises some of the questions that need to be addressed in relation to their “decolonization”. It also seeks to show how complex “decolonization” was in these two instances, and the importance of seeing individual cases in a regional and comparative perspective.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Sport for people with disabilities as factor in reshaping the post-apartheid South African sporting society
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Rademeyer, Cobus
    Limited research has been done on the history and impact of sport for people with disabilities in South Africa, yet disabled athletes like Oscar Pistorius, Natalie du Toit, Ernst van Dyk, Hilton Langenhoven, Zanele Situ, Lucas Sithole and many others have become internationally renowned sporting icons. They have contributed to making disability sport trendy and contributed to uniting a sports mad society and helping it enjoy, understand and appreciate disability sport on par with other sporting codes. Since 1994, disability sport has grown faster than many of the able-bodied sporting codes in South Africa and, in some cases, even surpassing it in popularity. The South African Minster of Sport and Recreation, Fikile Mbalula’s decision to amend policy and to give Olympic and Paralympic medalists the same compensation after the 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games clearly illustrates the rise to prominence of disability sport in this country. Statistics have shown that more television viewers supported South African Paralympic events than during the Olympic Games itself. During the apartheid era, disability sport had to endure the same abuse and social problems as other, able-bodied sporting codes in South Africa. However, after 1994 it seems that disability sport and disability athletes adapted to the fast changing sporting issues within the democratisation of both politics and sport in South Africa with more ease.
  • ItemOpen Access
    The long walk to economic freedom after apartheid, and the road ahead
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Fourie, Johan
    As South Africa moves further away from the political transition of 1994, the economic history of the post-apartheid era is coming up for debate. The optimism generated by the ANC’s early successes must now, after more than two decades of democracy, be tempered by its conspicuous failures. Over the last eight years in particular, the material welfare of South Africans have declined across large parts of the income distribution and the most damage was done to the poorest. Not all is lost though. African growth, technological innovation and private-sector participation in public sector services offer credible opportunities for accelerated development, but will only be effective if policy-makers are cognizant of the political realities. Well-directed and cheap policy interventions, like family planning, early-childhood education, free Wi-Fi in urban centres, and work visas and citizenship to highly-qualified foreigners can have dramatic and long-term effects. Policies, such as a youth subsidy, free tertiary education and charter schools would be more expensive – and more difficult, politically – but they would clear some bottlenecks in the labour and education sectors. Unfortunately though, the long walk to economic freedom for many will continue along a road full of potholes.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Political independence in Africa as portrayed by the white South African press during 1960
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Bron, Eleanor Janet
    This article examines the white South African press industry’s reflection on events in Africa during the pivotal year of 1960, also known as “Africa Year”. Through an examination of articles found in a selection of both Afrikaans and English newspapers, deductions can be made regarding the portrayal of the independence of African nations on the eve of their liberation. General attitudes shown towards Africa, as well as other key ideological issues, are evident during a time when South Africa was at odds with events on the continent. Through this analysis, several insights into the nature of the white minority media in South Africa can be gained, relating to how they responded to a changing political situation.
  • ItemOpen Access
    "From the fringes to fossils": the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania and the negotiated transition to democracy in South Africa, 1990-1994
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Kondlo, Kwandiwe
    Using archival materials and internal Pan African Congress (PAC) documentation, this article examines the dilemma of the PAC during the transitional negotiations. The new re-alignment of interest groups and political forces which occurred from the time of the release from prison of Nelson Mandela, up to and also after the April 1994 democratic elections, resulted in a complete alteration of the political playing fields; something which created problems for organisations like the PAC which was stuck on the radical traditions of the liberation struggle. The 1988 PAC document, released from the Dar-es-Salaam office of the organisation in Tanzania and titled, Some considerations in respect of the so-called dialogue with white ruled South Africa through its government, is the source of a strategic miscalculation as it advocated iron-clad views regarding the way in which a negotiated settlement should be handled, should it emerge. Moderate positions in support of a negotiated settlement were later, from 1991, articulated, but these views appealed only to the “elites” within the movement. The leadership of the PAC was in a difficult position as it had to keep the balance between the radical demands of its grassroots support and the “elite” insistence to give negotiations a chance, taking into account the international pressure and the changed global landscape in the balance of forces.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Operation Mayibuye: plans within plans, spies and lies, 1963
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Benneyworth, Garth
    If ever there is a documented plan that is able to evoke debate and controversy, it is Operation Mayibuye; a military plan seized by the police during a raid at Liliesleaf farm in Rivonia on 11 July 1963. This article examines aspects of this plan in detail, for example who drafted it, what its purpose was, whether it was ever approved and, if so, by whom? Other questions explored include whether it remained unapproved at the time of the raid – if so, why, and the number of copies seized by the police at Liliesleaf. This article builds on prior research regarding this plan, which started with an interview in April 2004 with four Rivonia Trial veterans. The mere mention of the Operation Mayibuye Plan unlocked a range of conflicting views, guaranteeing a heated, yet fascinating debate. Evidence was uncovered that the police used the plan to refabricate the evidence seized. Even in the contemporary context, no one seems able to reach universal consensus on the matter, with one exception being that those who were captured at Liliesleaf faced the very real possibility of being hanged for being in possession of it.
  • ItemOpen Access
    The United States of America's post-1990 foreign policy towards West Africa: the case study of Ghana
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Shai, K. B.; Molapo, R. R.; Sodi, T.
    This explorative study uses Ghana as a test case to critique the post-Cold War foreign policy of the United States of America (hereafter referred to as the US) towards West Africa. It does this by contemporaneously locating the US relationship with Ghana within a historical and regional context. History is crucial in this regard, because the past provides a sound basis for understanding the present and the future. To add, in International Politics, theory holds sway and history is used as a laboratory. In this article, the researchers propose Afrocentricity as an alternative theoretical paradigm crucial in understanding US foreign policy towards Africa in general. As shall be seen, such a paradigm remains critical in highlighting the peculiarity of the US relationship with Ghana. It is envisaged that a deeper understanding of the US foreign policy towards Ghana is achievable when its analysis and interpretation is located within a broader regional (West Africa) and continental (Africa) context. The two central questions that are grappled with in this article are: (i) Why does the US view Ghana as an indispensable political ally in West Africa? (ii) To what extent did Barack Obama’s presidency alter the US’s foreign policy towards Ghana, West Africa and Africa? To realise the purpose of this study, the researchers rely methodologically on interdisciplinary critical discourse and conversations in their widest form. The critical analysis for this article concludes that the agenda for democratic consolidation and access to oil resources feature as the key drivers of the US foreign policy towards Ghana and West Africa at large. While the US’s role in the democratisation of Ghana and other African states is observable, it can be argued that this principle has been merely used as a tool for international morality to justify American imperialism. Oil in West Africa’s Ghana is important for the US, both as an economic resource and a strategic energy source during wartime periods. Overall, the “differential” foreign policy towards individual African states is also a significant observation, which dispels the myth of a universal US foreign policy framework.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Kontemporêre transpersoonlike politologie en staatsfilosofie: kritiese kommentaar by politokratiese kommunitarisme
    (Faculty of Humanities, University of the Free State, 2017) Raath, A. W. G.
    Although politocratic communitarian political and legal philosophies have been established participants in academic discourse, it only spilled over to South African shores fairly recently. Similar to other established legal and political peer theories, politocratic communitarianism is particularly critical of the liberal emphasis on the individual’s private moral life, the idea of autonomous individual freedom supported by pre-social rights, and the concept of limited state involvement in private life. This essay investigates the theoretical points of departure, aspects of politocratic communitarianism, and some implications for political and legal life. These implications include the emphasis on community interests to the detriment of individual interests, the transfer of personal responsibility and liability to the community, and the fact that the material distinction between communial relationships of a natural and organisational nature disappears from view. To the extent that politocratic communitarianism appeals to undifferentiated ancient political and legal practices, it reflects a lack of individuation and differentiation regarding the application of law, it has a very limited view of the legally qualified nature of political community, it manifests an inability to distinguish between, and integrate the diverse legal interests in the community, and it lacks recognition of civil rights and liberties as limitations to state competence.