"To work hard and walk fearless": the specificity of women's resistance in South African history

OUTPUT TYPE: Conference or seminar papers
PUBLICATION YEAR: 2003
TITLE AUTHOR(S): J.M.Cherry
KEYWORDS: APARTHEID RESISTANCE, EASTERN CAPE PROVINCE, WOMEN, WOMEN'S ORGANISATIONS
DEPARTMENT: Democracy, Governance and Service Delivery (DGSD)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 2631

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Abstract

Why should we celebrate National Women's Day each year? What was so special about the events of August 9 1956, and can we draw from those events any arguments about the nature of women's resistance to apartheid? In this paper, I will draw on the oral testimony of women in the Eastern Cape in order to put forward an argument that there is a specificity to women's resistance which differentiates it from other forms of organization -a specificity which has everything to do with the fact that it is women who were doing the organizing. In other words, a 'gendered analysis' of women's resistance in the past will be put forward, which may also offer some tentative insight into challenges facing women's organization in South Africa today.