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Erinnerung aus zweiter Hand

Die born-free Generation in Südafrika und ihre Interpretation der Apartheid und des demokratischen Übergangs


Julia Sonnleitner

Nach den ersten demokratischen Wahlen in Südafrika 1994 ist eine Generation herangewachsen, welche die Apartheid nicht mehr miterlebt hat. Sie ist in einem demokratischen Staat aufgewachsen, in dem die Apartheid dennoch in vielen Bereichen nachwirkt. Basierend auf ethnografischer Forschung legt die Autorin dar, wie VertreterInnen der born-free Generation die Vergangenheit ihres Landes interpretieren. Durch zwei neue Ansätze leistet die Untersuchung einen innovativen Beitrag zur Erinnerungsforschung: erstens durch den rezeptions-zentrierten Zugang, der soziale Positionierungen der befragten Jugendlichen in den Mittelpunkt stellt. Zweitens durch das Konzept des Chronotopos, mit dem die Relevanz von Zeit, Raum und Subjekt in der Analyse von Vergangenheitsdarstellungen berücksichtigt wird.

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8. The people had enough: Das Ende der Apartheid

8. The people had enough: Das Ende der Apartheid


Abstract: The transition to democracy and the end of apartheid in the accounts of the past are the topic of this chapter. Similarities and differences according to the logic of the respective chronotope that the accounts are framed in are identified. First, regarding the causes of historical change, all accounts emphasise the agency of the masses who “had enough of apartheid”. It is remarkable that the time of transition 1990–1994 are contracted to one historical focal point, the release of Nelson Mandela. I describe how the transition to democracy is retrospectively, from the standpoint of the present, interpreted as an inevitable course of history, and not as a “miracle” as it is often framed in popular discourse. The accounts however diverge in genre and the authoritative sources of knowledge that they draw upon. As the time of the democratic transition and the first democratic elections took place around the birth of most of the interview partners, some of them wish to establish a link between the beginning of their existence and the onset of the democratic South Africa. Although they did not consciously experience these events in the strict sense of the word, they still wish to position themselves as witnesses of Nelson Mandela’s first public speech, the day of the first democratic elections, and South Africa’s victory in the rugby world cup as moments of nation building. I show how these narrations of “witnesses” borrow their imaginary from iconic mediatized representations of these events, such as photos and...

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