South Africa: Religion and Democratic Transition
March 5, 2011
This case study reviews the religious groups and individuals involved in the creation, perpetuation, resistance to, and eventual transition away from the apartheid government of South Africa, which featured the rule of the country’s white minority over the black majority. The case study examines the topic through five questions: What are the historical origins of South Africa’s ethnic divides? How were religious actors involved in apartheid its negotiated resolution? How important were international religious and political forces? What role did socio-economic factors play? How did religion intersect with these other factors in driving outcomes? Also featured in the case study are a timeline of key events, a guide to relevant religious, political, and non-governmental organizations, and a list of helpful further readings.