Addressing the African National Congress (ANC) in 1953, Nelson Mandela noted, “There is no easy walk to freedom anywhere.” Using Mandela’s statement as a launching point, this event will examine how activists and campaigners navigate repression. The history of the anti-apartheid movement provides a compelling case study that shows how activists maintained their political agency as they grappled with hostile governments and an often unsympathetic public. Bringing together anti-apartheid activists, contemporary campaigners and historians, this event will also explore how individuals/groups have negotiated internal power structures, as well as efforts to shutdown voices within movements. Finally, this event is designed to create a space where activists can reflect on the importance of hope, resistance and perseverance when it comes to campaigning for social and political justice.

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