A Level Edexcel – Paper 2 – South Africa into Year 12 transition work & course outline

Paper 2 – South Africa (1946-1994)

  1. Watch the history documentary available through the link and make notes on the orgins, developments and achievements of the ANC Movement by 1994.


  1. Using (http://www.sahistory.org.za) investigate and create a large and detailed timeline of key Civil Rights protest events 1946-1994


AL Edexcel USA & S Africa Route_F_topic_booklet

AL Paper 1 & 2 SOWS Route_F_USA & S Africa


Paper 2, Option 2F.2: South Africa, 1948–94: from apartheid state to ‘rainbow nation’


This option comprises a study in depth of South Africa during its transition from white minority rule to the free elections of 1994, a long, and at times, dramatic process in which South Africa changed from an apartheid state into a multi-racial democracy. Students will gain an in-depth understanding of the creation and consolidation of the apartheid regime by the National Party and the response and methods used by their political opponents in the struggle to overthrow apartheid, as well social, economic and cultural changes that accompanied this process.

Key topics


  • Life in South Africa c1948: race, segregation and discrimination; urbanisation and industrialisation, including township life; rural society; Afrikaner culture and politics; the influence of Britain. · Reasons for the National Party victory 1948, including the impact of the Second World War, the growth of Afrikaner nationalism, and international pressures for change. · Codifying and implementing apartheid, 1948–59: strengthening the National Party; apartheid laws; pass laws and education; the Tomlinson Report and Bantustans; political suppression and the Treason Trial. 1 The response to apartheid, c1948–59 · African nationalism, 1948–59: political opposition in 1948; the revival of the African National Congress (ANC); the Youth League and the Defiance Campaign; rural resistance; the Freedom Charter; the Pan-Africanist Congress (PAC). · Resistance to apartheid and government reaction, 1960–61: peaceful protest; the Sharpeville Massacre and its significance; the banning of political parties and the state of emergency. · Creating a republic, 1960–61: Verwoerd’s aims; the significance of Macmillan’s ‘wind of change’ speech; a republic established, 1960–61; leaving the Commonwealth. · African nationalist radicalisation, 1961–68: moves to armed struggle; the ANC and Umkhonto we Sizwe; the PAC and Poqo; the Rivonia Trial and significance for Nelson Mandela; the impact of exile and imprisonment on the ANC and PAC. 2 Radicalisation of resistance and the consolidation of National Party power, 1960–68 · Strengthening ‘separate development’, 1961–68: economic recovery, including international investment; developing the Bantustans; diplomatic ties; Vorster’s use of police powers and defence forces.

Key topics


  • Black Consciousness and the Soweto uprising: Steve Biko and the South African Students’ Organisation (SASO); the mobilisation of school children; the Soweto Uprising, its significance and suppression; the impact of the death of Steve Biko 1977. · The ANC re-strengthened: decline in the early 70s; internal reorganisation and external legitimacy; the role of Oliver Tambo; the global anti-apartheid movement. · Domestic challenges to National Party power, 1974–83, including political unrest, problems in the Bantustans, National Party division and scandal, economic pressures and the cost of defence commitments. 3 Redefining resistance and challenges to National Party power, 1968–83 · External pressures on National Party power, 1974–83, including political change in southern Africa, international condemnation and calls for economic sanctions, cultural and sporting boycotts. · Revolt in the townships, 1984–87: the United Democratic Front and grassroots organisation; protest strategies; communal and government violence; government suppression. · Reasons for Botha’s decision to negotiate, 1985–89, including the failure of Botha’s ‘total strategy’, economic problems and the impact of international isolation, the effect of the state of emergency. · Negotiation and compromise, 1989–91: de Klerk’s new course; the significance of Mandela’s release; the unbanning of political parties; the impact of unrest and violence; the dismantling of apartheid; CODESA 1991. 4 The end of apartheid and the creation of the ‘rainbow nation’, 1984–94 · A new political settlement, 1992–94: CODESA negotiations; nationalist divisions and communal violence; constitutional agreement and elections; the Government of National Unity; international recognition.

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