By Denis Goldberg, Z. Pallo Jordan

From June 1963 to October 1964, ten antiapartheid activists have been attempted at South Africa's Pretoria superb court docket. status one of the accused with Nelson Mandela, Ahmed Kathrada, and Walter Sisulu was once Denis Goldberg. Charged lower than the Sabotage and Suppression of Communism Acts for "campaigning to overthrow the govt. by way of violent revolution," Goldberg was once discovered responsible and sentenced to lifestyles imprisonment. the one white guy convicted through the notorious Rivonia trial, he performed a historical function within the fight for justice in South Africa.

In this amazing autobiography, Goldberg discusses transforming into up conscious about the injustice permeating his place of birth. He joined the South African Communist get together and helped discovered the Congress of Democrats. It was once his function as an officer within the armed underground wing of the African nationwide Congress (ANC), besides the fact that, that resulted in his existence sentence―the final result of which used to be a marvelous twenty-two years in the back of bars. whereas he used to be incarcerated, the racist dogma of apartheid imposed entire separation from his black comrades and co-workers, a segregation that denied him either the companionship and the suggestions of his fellow accused.

Recounted with humor and humility, Goldberg's tale not just presents a sweeping review of lifestyles in South Africa either in the course of and after apartheid, but in addition illuminates the studies of the activists and oppressors whose fates have been certain jointly.

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Extra info for A Life for Freedom: The Mission to End Racial Injustice in South Africa

Sample text

Apartheid is usually portrayed simply as a white-black conflict. It was much more complicated than that, and we have the evil legacy today of the multiple layers of discrimination. In the Western Cape there is still the inherited attitude among many Coloured people with aspirations to being white and privileged not to be tied to the Africans and the unprivileged. We have a long history in the Western Cape, where first segregation and then apartheid created a hierarchy of oppression of the nonwhite people: Coloureds as the most privileged, Indians less so, and African people unprivileged, in this descending scale.

We would go door-to-door trying to get whites to support the policies of the Congress Movement. They would take one look at us and slam the door in our faces. When the Coloured People’s Congress was formed, we would go out with them into Athlone, an area on the Cape Flats declared a Coloured Group Area. We carried on knocking on doors, trying to sell the newspaper and engage in discussion. Many people said they supported General Smuts, whose photograph from the war years was still on their walls next to a photograph of the British king and queen.

One of our early activities in the Modern Youth Society was helping to organize nonracial youth camps over the Easter weekends of 1954 and 1957. We felt it important for young people to be able to be together in defiance of the wrongful laws and regulations against such natural solidarity. We felt that people were going to have to defy these laws, and if we could detach whites from supporting the apartheid system we would help the process of liberation from racism. Simultaneously, all of us, of all races active together, were learning how to organize, how to mobilize, and how to get people to stand up against their oppression.

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