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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Building a nation: the Sowetan and the creation of a black public
Author:Cowling, LesleyISNI
Year:2014
Periodical:Journal of Southern African Studies (ISSN 1465-3893)
Volume:40
Issue:2
Pages:325-341
Language:English
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:newspapers
nation building
Blacks
About person:Aggrey Klaaste
External link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/03057070.2014.901639
Abstract:The Sowetan, a black readership newspaper established in the 1980s, grew to be the biggest circulation daily in South Africa in the 1990s. In the apartheid era, the Sowetan served disenfranchised urban black communities and promoted their interests in a society in which they were not democratically represented. The project was not simply oppositional to apartheid policies, but also engaged in and encouraged certain kinds of community endeavours, which it dubbed nation building. Led by its editor, Aggrey Klaaste, the newspaper engaged in an ongoing process of social re-imagining under this flag of nation building, partly through its editorial columns and partly by initiating and reporting on community projects. The Sowetan thus allowed a collective re-imagining of black public life that formed a counterweight to apartheid representations of black Africans and facilitated public engagement with questions of citizenship and nationhood long before the inception of South Africa's constitutional democracy. The story of the Sowetan illustrates the ways in which a newspaper can become an influential institution of public life. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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