Labour history Group (1984), “Organising at the Cape Town Docks”

This 1984 text, Organising at the Cape Town Docks, is notable for its discussion of the revolutionary syndicalist Industrial Workers of Africa in Cape Town from the late 1910s, and its links to the rise of the massive Industrial and Commercial Workers Union of Africa (ICU). The ICU was influenced by syndicalism (among other things). Get the PDF here. A Xhosa translation, Abasebenzi Basedokisini Ekapa, can … Continue reading Labour history Group (1984), “Organising at the Cape Town Docks”

Labour History Group, 1984, “Abasebenzi Basedokisini Ekapa” (Xhosa translation of “Organising at the Cape Town Docks”)

The “Labour History Group” based in Cape Town issued a series of pamphlets on the history of the working class in South Africa — more precisely, on some notable events in trade union history. For more on this group and its context, see here. This particular pamphlet, entitled Abasebenzi Basedokisini Ekapa is a Xhosa translation of Organising at the Cape Town Docks, which you can … Continue reading Labour History Group, 1984, “Abasebenzi Basedokisini Ekapa” (Xhosa translation of “Organising at the Cape Town Docks”)

Ulrich, 2004, “Remembering and Learning from the Past: The 1976 Uprising and the African Working Class” (Zabalaza)

Nicole Ulrich, 2006, “Remembering and Learning from the Past: The 1976 Uprising and the African Working Class,” Zabalaza: A journal of southern African revolutionary anarchism, number 7, pp. 22-23. 

PDF here, text below

This year [2006] marks the 30th anniversary of the 1976 Soweto uprising in South Africa, which marked the start of the fall of apartheid, and inspired activists worldwide. African working youth played a leading role, and their sacrifices showed us that ordinary people can make a difference to the injustices of our world. Revolutionaries should commemorate this struggle, but also learn from its failings.

RACE AND CLASS

The 1976 uprising was sparked by the imposition of Afrikaans-language teaching in African schools, seen as an act of national oppression. But there was more at play. The 1970s saw growing inflation creating much discontent amongst urban African youth. South Africa’s economy, which boomed in the 1960s, entered crisis in the 1970s. Unemployment grew steadily, reaching levels unseen for decades.

This was fuelled by under-funded, racist and authoritarian government institutions like the local government township administrations, the Bantu Education system and the miserable conditions in the segregated township schools. Although the government and large companies such as Continue reading “Ulrich, 2004, “Remembering and Learning from the Past: The 1976 Uprising and the African Working Class” (Zabalaza)”

Shawn Hattingh, 2007, “BHP Billiton and SAB: Outward Capital Movement and the International. Expansion of South African Corporate Giants”

From here Get the PDF here Citation details: HATTINGH, S. 2007. BHP Billiton and SAB: Outward capital movement and the international expansion of South African corporate giants. Available at: http://www.taxjustice.net/cms/upload/pdf/Ilrig0809South African giants.pdf [accessed 2014-02-18].         Shawn Hattingh (ILRIG), 2007, “BHP Billiton and SAB: Outward Capital Movement and the International Expansion of South African Corporate Giants” Abstract From the 1940s until the mid-1970s, the largest South African corporations, … Continue reading Shawn Hattingh, 2007, “BHP Billiton and SAB: Outward Capital Movement and the International. Expansion of South African Corporate Giants”

Profiles: Bobo Makhoba, 1975-2016, ZACF founder member

Bobo Makhoba of Soweto, South Africa, was a founder member of the Zablaza Anarchist Communist Federation (later, Front), and active in the Soweto Electricity Crisis Committee, largest affiliate of the Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF), a coalition of post-apartheid protest movements in Gauteng. He later moved to Trostkyism. This obituary from here. Hamba kahle comrade Bobo Makhoba (1975-2016) 1 October 2016, by Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front (ZACF) The … Continue reading Profiles: Bobo Makhoba, 1975-2016, ZACF founder member

Profiles: Abel Ramarope, 1961-2005, South Africa

Abel Ramarope was a political prisoner from the nationalist Pan-Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC), who did not receive amnesty in South Africa’s transition to a parliamentary, post-apartheid state. He was in contact with the Anarchist Black Cross, a project of the Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Federation (later, Front), and ran an anarchist study circle in Pretoria. Obituary from ZACF here. Obituary from mainstream media here. Continue reading Profiles: Abel Ramarope, 1961-2005, South Africa

Profiles: Ousi Lawrence Zitha, 1969-2013, South Africa, TAAC

Ousi Lawrence Zitha came from Kliptown,Soweto. A factory worker much of his life, he lost his job in 2006, and became involved in anarchist political schools/ Red and Black Forums, and joined ZACF-linked Tokologo African Anarchist Collective (TAAC). The following appeared as Nobuhle Dube, 2014, “Obituary of Ousi Lawrence Zitha,” Tokologo: Newsletter of the Tokologo African Anarchist Collective, number 3, p. 3. (You can get … Continue reading Profiles: Ousi Lawrence Zitha, 1969-2013, South Africa, TAAC

Profiles: Mandla Khoza, 1974-2019, ZACF anarchist-communist and Swaziland activist

A pioneering member of the Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front (ZACF) in South Africa and Swaziland, Mandla Khoza (“MK”) passed away in 2019, having suffered ill-health for years. See here. Continue reading Profiles: Mandla Khoza, 1974-2019, ZACF anarchist-communist and Swaziland activist

Interview: Warren McGregor, 2014, on anarchism, ZACF and strategy

This is an interview with Warren McGregor, an office-bearer in the Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front (ZACF), on anarchist-communist strategy and vision in South Africa. All reference details are in the PDF itself. The interview was conducted by Leroy Maisiri. Get the PDF here. Continue reading Interview: Warren McGregor, 2014, on anarchism, ZACF and strategy

Interview: Lekhetho Mtetwa, 2013, on Soweto anarchism, Landless Peoples Movement (LPM)

A 2013 interview with Lekhetho Mtetwa of the Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front (ZACF), focused on his work in the Landless Peoples Movement (LPM), a post-apartheid social movement. The name notwithstanding, the LPM was mainly involved in urban squatter communities, not amongst farm-dwellers and farm-workers. Full reference details are included in the PDF. Get the PDF here. Continue reading Interview: Lekhetho Mtetwa, 2013, on Soweto anarchism, Landless Peoples Movement (LPM)

Interview: Lucien van der Walt, 2010, on Johannesburg anarchism, Wits 2001, NEHAWU, Anti-Privatisation Forum

Interview from the Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF) archives,  created by Dale McKinley, held at the South African History Archive (SAHA), at Constitution Hill, Johannesburg. In this interview Lucien van der Walt talks about his background, the anarchist and left movement in Johannesburg in the 1990s and 2000s, and experiences in the APF, a major coalition of post-apartheid movements founded in 2000. He also draws some lessons … Continue reading Interview: Lucien van der Walt, 2010, on Johannesburg anarchism, Wits 2001, NEHAWU, Anti-Privatisation Forum

Shawn Hattingh, 2017, “The Political Nature of the Fourth Industrial Revolution”

Shawn Hattingh, 9 November 2017, “The Political Nature of the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” Pambazuka News, from here.

Mechanisation and automation have been called the Fourth Industrial Revolution. But these are not inevitable or neutral economic realities. They are political weapons of oppression under capitalism. It is a war against the working classes to increase profits. It is no an accident that bosses choose to mechanise and automate in the context of the massive crisis of capitalism.

Recently, the accounting multinational company, Grant Thompson, conducted a study amongst 2500 multinational corporations regarding mechanisation, automation and the introduction of artificial intelligence. Of these companies, 56% said they planned to automate parts of their operations within the next year. Another study by Oxford University was even starker. It stated that 47% of jobs in the United States and possibly 50% of jobs in parts of Africa – including South Africa – could possibly be lost to artificial intelligence, mechanisation and automation in the next two decades. It is clear that if this transpires, the consequences will be dire for workers in Africa – including South Africa – and their ability to organise.

Some people have said that this move to use advanced computers and automation is the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’; and that the inevitable advance of technology Continue reading “Shawn Hattingh, 2017, “The Political Nature of the Fourth Industrial Revolution””

Phillip Nyalungu, 2019, “Experiences of an Activist and ZACF Anarchist-Communist in Soweto, 2002-2012”

Phillip Nyalungu, 2019, “Experiences of an Activist and ZACF Anarchist-Communist in Soweto, South Africa, 2002-2012,” Anarchist Studies,  27 (2), pp. 61-76. Get the PDF here   Continue reading Phillip Nyalungu, 2019, “Experiences of an Activist and ZACF Anarchist-Communist in Soweto, 2002-2012”