It seemed to some that the key goals of Black Consciousness had been attained, in that black identity and psychological liberation were growing. People were inspired by the Soweto Uprising and Biko’s death including Desmond Tutu, and the Black Consciousness Movement kept growing and spreading.
Biko and the legacy of the Black Consciousness movement assisted in giving the resistance a sense of fearlessness. Its emphasis on individual psychological pride aided people in realizing that they could not wait for distant leaders to free them but that they had to take matters into their own hands. As struggled to make progress, this new fearlessness soon resulted in a new battle on the streets, in which larger groups of ordinary people confronted the authorities much more frequently and aggressively. If the ANC could not beat the apartheid government’s army with its small army of guerrilla soldiers, it was able to ultimately seize power not through war but through the amazing determination and perseverance by the ordinary black people’s desire to make South Africa better place. What guns and war could not achieve was achieved by teenagers throwing stones.
Steve Biko’s quest for black unity eventually cost him his life. The legacy left behind by the Black Consciousness movement had paved the way for the future of democratic South Africa. The movement gave hope and pride to a new generation of people, who had reached a level of consciousness about the plight of Blacks in apartheid South Africa that could not continue to be ignored. The Government thought that that the death of Biko would bring the end of resistance but on the contrary it provoked more violence and the struggle would grow and escalate out of control. It is clearly evident that the role played by Biko and his colleagues in the Black Consciousness Movement as well as in the fight for South Africa’s freedom cannot be under-estimated. Biko’s life reflected the aspirations of many frustrated young Black people. After his death Biko became a symbol of Black Nationalism and even after death, his spirit lives on.