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Global Tribe
Amy with South African Youth

South Africa Journal
Cape Town, South Africa
South Africa MapWhen I was growing up in Kenya, I thought of South Africa as a place of repression: barbed wire, guards, sanctions, prison cells and brutal violence. There wasn't much to counter that stereotype. Those of us who lived in Kenya were not allowed to visit a country that was so close, nor were South Africans allowed to visit Kenya. I was curious to see what the new South Africa is like... post-Apartheid. Visiting the townships near Cape Town, I came to see what Nelson Mandela meant when he said "the past still haunts the present." But the past informs the present as well, as I learned visiting Robben Island with a former political prisoner and seeing the art that came out of the Apartheid era. I also learned of a historic community called District Six, which lies in ruins today but offers clues to what a racially integrated South Africa could be like. Other clues can be found at a Cape Province vineyard, whose wine carries the first black-owned label and is aptly named New Beginnings. It's also a fitting way to describe South Africa as it tries to heal racial wounds, save wildlife, reduce violence and AIDS, and above all, celebrate the diversity that is at the heart of this unique African nation.
Amy Eldon
In GlobalTribe Amy Eldon travels to South Africa, Mexico and the Philippines, seeking out people who are finding solutions to some of the greatest challenges we face in the 21st century.

District Six

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Video: District Six

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Before it was bulldozed to the ground, District Six was a multiracial community in Cape Town that showed the promise of an integrated South Africa. In 1966, the apartheid government declared it "whites only" and forced everyone to live in racial groups. Today, as South Africans build a new nation on the principles of equality and racial harmony, two musicians capture the spirit of District Six in song... with a doo-wop twist.


Robben Island
Amy travels to South Africa's most popular tourist destination, the notorious prison on Robben Island. Her guide is Ahmed Kathrada, a former prisoner and fellow inmate of Nelson Mandela.

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Video: Robben Island


New Beginnings

Video: New Beginnings
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Video: New Beginnings

In the rolling hills of Cape Province, Amy visits a unique vineyard that harvests hope as well as grapes. It's the story of New Beginnings, the first black-owned winery in South Africa and how a simple promise turned the laborers into owners.


Art of Apartheid
On a tour of Cape Town's Art Museum, artist Sue Williamson shows Amy how the country's recent history and turmoil finds visual expression in sculptures and paintings. Williamson, herself, is using modern technology to document a painful chapter of the new South Africa - her people's search for truth and reconciliation.

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Video: Art of Apartheid


Cape Town Rap

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Video: Cape Town Rap

Braase Vanni Kaap, better known as BVK, is the first hiphop crew to record a whole album in the local slang of the Cape Flats. By ditching fake American accents in favor of Cape creol, BVK hopes to capture ghetto life and comment on social issues with credibility.


Phinda Wildlife Reserve
One of the biggest reintroduction of wildlife in Africa took place in Northern KwaZulu-Natal, turning overworked farmlands into a natural paradise. Today, the game reserve at Phinda, which in Zulu means "the return," is home to lions, buffalos, elephants, leopards, rhinos, cheetahs and other wildlife. And it's the last stop on Amy's tour of the new South Africa.

Video: Phinda Wildlife Refuge
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Video: Phinda Wildlife Reserve


South Africa

South Africa
MexicoSouth AfricaPhilippines
South Africa JournalSouth Africa Journal

District SixDistrict Six

Robben IslandRobben Island

New BeginningsNew Beginnings

Art of ApartheidArt of Apartheid

Cape Town RapCape Town Rap

Phinda Wildlife ReservePhinda Wildlife Reserve

Country Stats

Government Type:


43.6 million
(July 2002 est.)

Ethnic Groups:
75.2% black
13.6% white
8.6% Colored
2.6% Indian

68% Christian
2% Muslim
1.5% Hindu
28.5% indigenous beliefs

Afrikaans, English, Ndebele, PediSotho, Swazi, Tsonga, TswanaVenda, Xhosa, Zulu

Population below poverty line:
50% (2000 est.)

Source: CIA World Factbook 2002




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