Race, Inequality and Civil Unrest: Social Tensions on the Rise

Rocco Walter Ronza

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in libroChapter

Abstract

At the end of apartheid, South Africa was characterised by significant racial and ethnic divisions, by deep socio-economic inequality and by a high degree of political instability. The democratic regime born in 1994 tried to tackle each one of these three dimensions. Over the past ten years, however, the new regime began to reveal its shortcomings. While “privileged South Africa” has increasingly become multiracial, the ratio between the rich and the poor has not changed and the distance between the two groups in terms of income and life chances seems even greater. The wait for the advent of a two-party system based on alternating parties in government has proved much longer than anticipated, and the growth of corruption have led to the decline of president Jacob Zuma’s ANC. However, the expectation that the end of the electoral dominance of the ruling party can make way for a revolution in South Africa’s political landscape seems to underestimate the key role that racial and ethnic diversity continues to play in the South African society. It is hard to believe that the opposition parties, which come from disparate parts of South Africa’s racially and socially divided spectrum, could together represent an alternative as a national ruling majority to the mainly black-African political “grand coalition” forged by the ANC from the ashes of apartheid. South Africa remains a nation composed of communities which are willing to coexist and cooperate, but remain separated by different experiences, interests, cultures and histories.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteSouth Africa. The Need for Change
EditorGiovanni Carbone
Pagine75-91
Numero di pagine17
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2016

Keywords

  • Class
  • Ethnicity
  • Politics
  • Race
  • Social Cleavages
  • South Africa

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