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Unisa Press

Under Protest: The Rise of Student Resistance at the University of Fort Hare

Daniel Massey
Hidden Histories series, Unisa Press
April 2010
ISBN 978-1-86888-542-8
SA price: R250(VAT incl) US$41.50, GB£22.00  €32.20 (airmail incl)
Keywords: South Africa / History / Politics, Sociology

Unisa Press Sales: 012 429 3515

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About the book

`The history of Fort Hare cannot be retold as if it were one event.  It was, and is, the culmination of a drama of interpenetrating and, at times, contradictory forces.  It was moulded by the peculiarities of the history of this region of southern Africa, and the struggles authored by that history.’—Oliver Tambo, 1991

Under Protest, by Fort Hare alumnus Daniel Massey, combines a trove of previously untapped university records with the recollections of dozens of former students to dig deep into the complex past of the institution that educated figures like Tambo, Nelson Mandela, Mangosuthu Buthelezi and Robert Mugabe. Through the eyes of former students, we see just how the university veered sharply off the course intended by its missionary founders and apartheid trustees, giving birth to many of the most important leaders in South Africa’s struggle for democracy. Massey interviews Fort Harians ranging from Govan Mbeki and Wycliffe Tsotsi to Jeff Baqwa and Thenjiwe Mtintso, who explain the vital role Fort Hare played in the development of their activism. He pays particular attention to the 1960 government takeover, showing how the authorities’ attempt to stifle student protest ended up creating the hothouse conditions that eventually brought apartheid to its knees.

About the author

Daniel Massey was born in Manhattan and grew up in the Bronx, New York. He graduated from grade eight in June 1990─ the same day that Nelson Mandela visited the Bronx following his release from prison ─ and has been drawn to South Africa ever since. He received an undergraduate degree from Brown University and Masters degrees from the University of Fort Hare and the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. He lived for two years in the Eastern Cape of South Africa and now resides in Manhattan, where he works as a journalist.