• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How important was the opposition of other countries in bringing apartheid in South Africa to an end?

Extracts from this document...


Gemma Illsley 11Y Coursework Assignment How important was the opposition of other countries in bringing apartheid in South Africa to an end? I do agree that international opposition to apartheid was one of the factors in bringing it to an end. However I think there are other causes, both long and short term, that led to the end of apartheid in South Africa. People all over the world were shocked to see the violence in events like the Soweto riots and the Sharpeville and Langa shootings. They also saw the events occurring between the South African government and extremist groups like the ANC, which appeared during Verwoerd's apartheid. These events were short-term causes that brought about the end of apartheid, but they had a large effect on international opinion, which was a long-term cause. However to the rest of the world, what actually happened in South Africa might have appeared different to the reality. This is because often, different interpretations were given by historians, and the people involved. This would have been fairly confusing for people outside South Africa, and they may not have ever really understood completely what was happening. ...read more.


In 1977 the government tried to introduce some reforms in South Africa. This was known as 'total onslaught, total strategy'. The idea of this policy was to become harder on the governments opponents, and to introduce some reforms for the blacks. However this was unsuccessful, and the blacks felt that they had gained nothing from the reforms. This led to an eruption of riots and protests in the townships. The blacks became even more willing to challenge the white rule. During this time guerrilla attacks from the extremist groups like the ANC and AZAPO began to occur more frequently. I think this was another cause because this severely weakened the government's ability to keep control of the townships, and eventually many of them became completely ungovernable. In my opinion, this was a very important short-term cause of the ending of apartheid in South Africa, because the government were weakened and had to arrest 34,000 people to try and maintain some form of law and order. However after the violence was brought under some sort of control, P.W Botha, the leader of the nationalists had no idea what he should do next. ...read more.


This had an effect on international opinion in the long-term, because as the world saw the events happening in South Africa, like the Soweto riots and the guerrilla attacks, it shocked their opinion and they could see how the blacks were treated under white supremacist rule. After this I think other countries became more willing to criticise South Africa and try and bring apartheid to an end, so in that respect international opinion was an important factor. However without the struggle of the blacks, and the effort they put in to bringing apartheid to an end, right from when it started, was, in my opinion the main and most important cause of bringing it to an end. However without the help of other countries and the weakness of the white supremacist government in the long run, I do not think that black resistance alone could have bought apartheid to an end in South Africa. Therefore, in a way the blacks and black resistance were the power behind ending apartheid, but without the political opposition and help from other countries, it would not have been enough to actually end apartheid in South Africa for good. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Politics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Politics essays

  1. South Africa 1945-1994 The end of Apartheid.

    The last important turning point of his life was his release from prison in 1990 and onwards. Once and after released, he continued his efforts for freedom, winning the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize leading on to become President of South Africa in 1994.

  2. Apartheid in South Africa sources questions

    Blacks had been unhappy with the apartheid regime for a long time. The various aspects of it deliberately restricted their lives and enforced the white's belief in their superiority. The government enforced the apartheid regime in 1948 by creating a strong security police force that used methods, which included banning, detention without trial, murder and press censorship and harassment.

  1. Comparative Analysis: The churches and their affect on society and politics in the cases ...

    poverty and disease. Why did the Churches in South Africa and Namibia act in this reverse mirror fashion, with the late 80s being the watershed period of inversion from reaction to pro-action in South Africa and pro-action to reaction in Namibia? Theory Section To aid answering the above question I will use a

  2. South Africa - Apartheid Sources Questions

    Therefore, it can be seen that Source D challenges the view of Bantustans, Source H agrees with the view of Bantustans and Source F both agree and disagree with the view of Bantustans. Question E The Sources D, G and I are useful in helping us to understand the effects that Apartheid had upon South Africans.

  1. Apartheid in South Africa.

    A lot of protesting around the world followed the Sharpeville shootings, including condemnation by the United Nations. Sharpeville made a huge change in South Africa's history: the country found itself increasingly isolated in the international community for the next 3 decades.

  2. The ending of white minority rule in South Africa was achieved only because of ...

    In the 1960s, a technological revolution started and this meant that more people were needed to do higher skilled jobs and there were just not enough whites to do these jobs.

  1. How important was the opposition of other countries in bringing apartheid in South Africa ...

    This was considered a miracle by many, as Apartheid laws were being loosened. In October 1989, ANC leaders were released from prison and in February 1990 so was Mandela. De Klerk effectively abolished Apartheid. Soon after, Mandela was named the leader of the ANC.

  2. "The ending of White minority rule in South Africa was achieved only because of ...

    He was later convicted of sabotage and treason and in June sentenced to life imprisonment on Robben Island. Then in 1980 his close friend Oliver Tambo, launches an international campaign for his release and finally in 1990 a breakthrough appeared.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work