‘Evolution of Struggle: Legacies of the Anti-Apartheid Movement’ is a project designed to expand and enrich the outlook of social movements in the UK, by identifying the successful strategies and tactics which shaped the international anti-apartheid campaign and consider how these might inform contemporary campaigns and movements.
As 2018 marks the centenary of Nelson Mandela’s birth, and with an increasingly polarising global political situation, this feels like an apt time to explore the legacies of one of the defining struggles for justice of the twentieth century. As we witness the resurgence of the far-right movements around the world, it is vital that we consider the contemporary relevance of the global struggle against apartheid.
Through a series of events, the project will provide an opportunity for former and contemporary campaigners to reflect on, and learn from, the experiences, successes and challenges of the British Anti-Apartheid Movement. The project will bring together campaigners, researchers and policymakers to ensure a diverse range of views and voices are cantered in these discussions, as well as ensuring critical reflection on hierarchies of power and experiences of repression.
The project presents an opportunity to encourage cross-generational dialogue between social justice campaigners. Through these discussions, we hope to foster an understanding that the life of a movement is rarely linear; there will be peaks and troughs, setbacks and successes – all of which are part of the work of creating change. In this way, the project will bring historical moments alive in ways which will be relevant to contemporary campaigns and movements.