Record Details

Memories and testimonies of passbooks, permits and platkeps in apartheid-era Batho, Mangaung

New Contree

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Title Memories and testimonies of passbooks, permits and platkeps in apartheid-era Batho, Mangaung
Creator Du Bruyn, Derek
Subject History; Oral History Batho; apartheid; memories; testimonies; influx control; passbooks; permits; platkeps; curfew
Description he memories and testimonies of black people who were on the receiving end of racial discrimination provide important evidence of their lived experiences during the apartheid era (1948–1994). They ‘revisit’ apartheid South Africa because of recurring memories of traumatic experiences. Sadly, they relive the painful incidents emotionally when such memories are triggered. The National Museum in Bloemfontein has interviewed more than 150 Batho residents about their experiences of Batho’s apartheid past, specifically their experiences of racist municipal laws and regulations. Although discriminatory municipal policies are rooted in the racial sentiments of Bloemfontein’s colonial (1846–1910) and segregationist (1910–1948) periods, they are also based on national legislation, notably the Natives (Urban Areas) Act of 1923. Direct quotes from interviews allow interviewees to speak for themselves. The interviewees’ testimonies of their experiences have generated information about, among others, the carrying of passbooks; visits to the pass office; maltreatment by municipal police (platkeps); being arrested for not having a passbook; spending time in police cells for committing loaferskap (idleness) or for housing an overnight guest without a lodger’s permit; being victims of violent house raids; and being harassed by the night curfew siren. Because most interviewees’ parents and grandparents were subjected to similar discriminatory laws and regulations, traumatic experiences are a multi-generational phenomenon.Contribution: The oral history methodology was used to reconstruct aspects of Batho’s apartheid history. By tapping into people’s memories and testimonies, this article aims to present a history from ‘below’ of Mangaung’s oldest existing township and, thereby, contribute to local historiography.
Publisher AOSIS Publishing
Contributor Oral historians oral history assistants students interns who have assisted me with the conducting of interviews
Date 2024-03-19
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion — Oral history interviews; conventional historical research
Format text/html application/epub+zip text/xml application/pdf
Identifier 10.4102/nc.v91i0.254
Source New Contree; Vol 91 (2024); 19 pages 2959-510X 0379-9867
Language eng
The following web links (URLs) may trigger a file download or direct you to an alternative webpage to gain access to a publication file format of the published article:
Coverage Mangaung; Free State; South Africa Apartheid era; 20th century South African history Elderly; men; women; people of colour
Rights Copyright (c) 2024 Derek du Bruyn