Discrimination The divide between social classes

Table of Contents:

  • A Heros Story: Nelson Mandela's Journey Through the Apartheid of South Africa, By Samantha Perry.
  • Poem: Space, Nostalgia, Afraid, Murder, Calamity, Everyday, By Anna Roberts
  • Poem: One Child, The Innocents, Statues, By Rachel Szczypinski
  • Documentary: The Divide: Darfur Genocide, By Diaiza Woodward

Introduction

Just imagine being caught in the middle of a war zone. Or losing your family, friends, everyone you knew died at the hands of others. Those people's motives were based simply off of who was superior and what they thought was fair and what was theirs to take. This is what many people experience within the Rwandan Genoicide. The mistreatment, hatred, and violence towards different tribes or the government itself. Many people fall victim of this discrimantion and mistreatment because they may be part of a different, lower class of tribe or within their community.Our topic about discrimination and social class is reflected in the novel Over a Thousand Hills I Walk With You by Hanna Jansen, by the conflict about the Rwandan Genocide which was between two tribes: the Hutus and the Tutsis. How the topic is shown in the book was because of the fact that the Hutu were considered inferior to the Tutsi (both are two social classes in Africa) in which discrimination and conflict emerged. The impact of the discrimination and social class made the main character--Jeanne--lose her family in the end. Discrimination was a main cause of some historic events like the Rwanda genocide, apartheid, and the Darfur genocide along with many others. In the Rwandan genocide, the Tutsis tribal group was thought to be in a higher social class than the Hutus, another tribal group, which caused a political divide between the two tribes. The law of Apartheid allowed segregation and discrimination based on race. A well known public figure, Nelson Mandela was against apartheid and wanted an end to it. The led him to being imprisoned for almost three decades. Another genocide that grew off of discrimination was the Darfur genocide. This genocide involved the Darfur civilians and the Janjaweed militia group who terrorized villages who were against them.

Our purpose is to analyze and interpret discrimination in African social systems. This is shown through our novel Over a Thousand Hill I Walk With You by Hanna Jensen as we travel through a young girl's life after the Rwandan Genocide. These events were stimulated by the various efforts of discrimination between the Hutu and Tutsi social class. Our purpose is shown in our magazine is shown by a series of heart-touching poems displayed through the social structures in the Rwandan Genocide and the governments in Africa. We also have a story focusing on the unknown struggles behind Nelson Mandela’s reason for protest and how discrimination faced him. Finally, we have a documentary tying together the history of genocides and social mistreatment in the Darfur Genocide

"Nelson Mandela's Journey Through the Apartheid of South Africa" by Samatha Perry

“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”

-Nelson Mandela

I was born on July 8 in 1918 in a tiny village of Mvezo, on the banks of the Mbashe River in Transkei, South Africa. It never seemed like much; I never thought I would grow up where practically everyone knew my name and why. But that doesn’t matter at the moment. Let’s explain how I first started my protesting life.

The first time I protested was when I was in University of Fort Hare which is the equivalent for University of Oxford or Harvard University. It was an honor to be there really, but my fellow students started to boycott and were dissatisfied with the food and lack of power; and I agreed with them. As a result, resigned from my position of Student Representative Council (SRC)--which was a honor for those who were elected. The University took this as insubordination and gave me two choices: choice one was to return to school and serve on SRC, or return home. I packed up and went back home after refusing to go back to that school that wouldn’t change their way.

It was after that small protest that my career in protesting really began. I didn’t have a name that people knew when I first got there; but I got a more of a name when I joined an Anti-Apartheid group after running away from home from an arranged marriage. I got acquitted a few times with the help of my law school friend Oliver Tambo. With his help, I didn’t go to jail and in return, I helped him set up a law firm called Mandela and Tambo. What we did with that law firm was to counsel the unrepresented blacks at low-cost to free of charge--which was sort of another protest that we did legally if you really thought about it.

There were a few close calls with going to jail, and the one time that I was unable to get away with what I did. What happened was that I orchestrated a three-day protest with a few friends of mine from African National Congress (ANC). I was arrested for five years for leading the strike; only, I was brought back for a retrial later sometime during my five year sentence and was sentenced to life in prison instead of just those five years.

Prison life at the time was unyielding, and even made the most sane men--insane. We were shoved into small cells and during the day worked in a mining quarry with little breaks, and for no pay. Not only that, but because I was black I was treated worse. For the smallest--I mean the tiniest of offences--I would be punished in what people call inhumane ways. I got the worst food there was to get and even fewer privileges than fellow white prisoners. Though, it also might’ve been because I was a well known person for being anti-apartheid with how many protests I have gone to and how many times I’ve been acquitted. The only nice part of prison was when my wife--Winnie Madikizela-Mandela--visited but she was only allowed to visit me every six months which was a downer.

What was probably the hardest thing for me while in prison was the lack of ability to help with stop apartheid. But I somehow kept my name alive and strong--with the help of Oliver though. I would never forget how he tried to help me out of jail. Once he used my fame in the outside to set up a campaign to free me. Only the government used this to strike a deal with me; my freedom in exchange for me renouncing violence and recognition of the “independent” Transkei Bantustan. Honestly, no matter how much I wanted my freedom, protesting was what I feel like my life was for. It would all go to waste if I accepted the deal; everything I had done would’ve gone to waste. So I said no to the deal--even when they came back time again and again striking the same deal. Sometimes it was hard for me to say no, especially after a punishment but I never let them know that. No matter how many years passed, how beaten I would get, or how thin I might be getting. Protesting apartheid was more important than that deal. The people needed me and it’s for them that I am doing this. So I talked to my friends in the ANC--which was a Defiance Campaign Against Apartheid--that were out in the world, organizing a few things in secret from the guards while making sure that they were okay. It helped with the times I spent in prison.

Sometimes I lost hope, but never gave up the reason why I was doing this. So it came to a surprise to me that for one of those meetings with the government--about the deal--that instead of the same “debby-downer” guy with the deal, a new guy came in 1990. He told me that he was the new president named F.W. de Klerk and that he was here to relinquish my imprisonment. Which was interesting because over the years I moved from Robben Island (the place with the quarry) to something that was similar to house-arrest after being diagnosed with tuberculosis. With my imprisonment relinquished and the unbanning of ANC I immediately urged foreign powers not to reduce their pressure on South America government for constitutional reforms. Because in all my time in prison, I always thought about stopping apartheid once and for all; I made that very clear to those as I declared that the ANC would not stop armed struggle until black majority received the right to vote, without being blocked might I add.

It was because of this urge that my name was starting to be whispered on the streets of South Africa. It came as a bit of shock when I was the first inaugurated as the country’s first black president in 1994 on May 10. My immediate action was to help with the new constitution that was being formed even more so than when it was 1992 where it was just starting out. I didn’t have much say in it at all but felt confident in the works that was being created, happy that our voices were finally being heard.

After becoming president, people wondered what I had gone through and why I had done the things I did. So I published my first autobiography called, Long Walk to Freedom. But I was slowly growing older and weaker. I wanted to help out more, but with my weak body and as president I didn’t quite know how until a stray thought crossed my mind and I instantly knew that it would help. So I established the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund.

I kept helping people as much as I could and stepped down in 1999 after my 81st birthday past. I stayed in contact and helped out as much as I could and barely let the thought of being diagnosed with prostate cancer let me down. In fact, in 2003, I set up another foundation: Mandela Rhodes Foundation. From then I drifted from the spotlight to spending time with my family and my grandsons and daughters. I even published another book! It was called Conversations with Myself and even another book in 2011: Nelson Mandela By Himself: The Authorised Book of Quotations.

From then on I was admitted frequently into the hospital to sometimes discharged the next day or in a few weeks. But I was happy. Three charities were set up and my legacies were making me proud. My life was full of adventures and wasn’t boring for a single moment (other than the times in prison where I was alone to my thoughts). But I think I felt the most at peace when I was in the hospital for the final time was the fact that I made a difference. That I was able to influence and pressure the government enough for change. That apartheid wasn’t tolerated anymore. So on December 5, 2013, I was in the hospital and slipped away peacefully feeling proud of the difference I had impacted on Africa for the better.

“When a man has done what he considers to be his country, he can rest peacefully. I believe I have made that effort and that is; therefore, why I will sleep for eternity.”

-Nelson Mandela

Poems by Anna Roberts

space

I awake to gun shots,

Screams in the distance.

Families being torn apart,

No one is spared.

My brother calls my name,

I turn to see his murder.

_______________

nostalgia

Throughout the years

You were always there for me.

Between my success

And greatest struggles.

Whenever I was scared at night,

I pictured you at my side.

Throughout all the foster care,

You were the only one that’s stuck by.

My teacher, best friend, mentor,

The closest to a real family.

One phone call to my foster family

“Take up arms with all Tutsi

Neighbors

Friends

Teachers.”

There was no school the next day.

The next day my foster family left,

Leaving me.

I walked to the school,

To see your dead body

Draped across the entrance

_______________

afraid

Sleep becomes amongst me

Tired from running

All that's left is near

_______________

murder

A breeze arouses,

Rwandan villages shake,

Rain dissolves the blood.

Wind whistles through

What's left of my home.

No longer individual houses,

Just one combined disasters

_______________

calamity

Cockroaches swarm the area.

I look over the hills

To all the broken souls.

What have we done?

I shame myself and others

for all the damage we’ve done.

Genocide powers through Rwanda,

a place I am too shamed

to call home

_______________

everyday

Everyday I wait

For equality

For chances

For a job

For fresh food and water

For a family

For an education

Everyday

Poems by Rachel Szczypinski

The Innocents:

They were like fire and ice,

Polar opposites of each other that could never agree.

But when they got together it was fire and gasoline,

A huge explosion of hatred and death in one smooth movement.

It was like a wave that you didn't see coming,

Sudden, quick, and effective.

What used to be my home, my neighborhood, my town,

All it is now a graveyard with no headstones.

All this tragedy and sorrow just because of our tribe,

One trying to conquer and be superior to the other.

They came to get rid of us and they succeeded, n

One fell swoop at our small, remote tribe and we had no chance.

We fought for our lives like cornered, trapped animals,

But there was nothing we could do.

Had nowhere to run, it's all trees and endless forests, no escape.

Our weapons were no match for theirs,

And our people were no match for their people.

I guess we should have expected it, the way we treated each other.

Now we all just lie here, no more life where before it thrived with life.

__________________________

Statues

How could they do that?

Just kill that many people with no distinct emotion at all,

Like robots being told what to do… but they have a choice.

All those families, children, people, just gone.

It's terrible to think that people could hate and despise so much,

That they eventually act out on people lower and helpless compared to them.

The news man’s voice so monotone, like the usual day

Or this was supposed to happen, like it was expected.

I look around to just see statues; no emotion.

Like it just went over their heads with no thought or consideration.

I don't know what to do

Do I become one of these statues and act like everything is ok?

I just can't forget about those innocent people who weren't given the chance.

Their deaths were at the hands of others that forgot the simplest thing;

The importance of equality and the morals behind it.

Those people acted more like savage animals based on what they did to those people.

All because of who was bigger and stronger; child's games.

But I won't stand and be a statue.

__________________________

One Child

None of this makes sense,

All the hatred and arguing.

At least no one notices my presence,

Through this giant wall of discriminating and fighting.

I, however, am on the other side,

To me, we are all the same.

No matter what tribe you belong, we should not look down or chide,

I don't understand the shame.

The shame we put on others,

Just because of where they come from.

We are all sisters and brothers,

No matter our story and sum.

I don't know why this is happening,

But in the meantime I will I just keep hoping.

Documentary: "The Divide: Darfur Genocide" By Diazia Woodward

Biblography:

Child Soliders. Digital image. The End of Genocide. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2016.

"Genocide in Darfur." Genocide in Darfur. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2016.

History.com Staff. "Nelson Mandela." History.com. A&E Television Networks, 2009. Web. 11 Dec. 2016.

History.com Staff. "The Rwandan Genocide." History.com. A&E Television Networks, 2009. Web. 15 Dec. 2016.

Ludi. African Lake. Digital image. Pixabay. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2016.

Nelson Mandela. Digital image. ABC News. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2016.

Rwanda Genocide Image. Digital image. World Vision Magazine. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2016.

Sunset in Africa. Digital image. Wallpapers HD. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2016

Credits:

Created with images by ludi - "nature reserve africa lake"

Made with Adobe Slate

Make your words and images move.

Get Slate

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.