Enriching our Understanding – English

In Grade 7 English we have just read Journey to Jo’burg, by Beverly Naidoo. Before reading the novel I researched and wrote a magazine article on Apartheid, this was the second hardest topic. We are exploring the relationships between texts and the real world and we found many connections between Journey to Jo’burg and the real world during Apartheid.

In the book, when Naledi and Tiro were lost in the station, there was a pass raid (The pass is a small passport which contains your name, where you live, your employment and your age. All black adults (above 16) had to carry a pass with them at all times. If they were caught without their passes, they were sent to jail, and maybe even beaten up).
a man, forgot his pass and the police sent him to jail, after this, Naledi and Tiro found his family and notified them about what had happened.

This is has happened in the real world also. Pass raids occurred, and many black South Africans were sent to jail, just for not carrying their passes. The thing is that only black people had to carry passes with them; white people didn’t.

In the book, while Naledi, Tiro and Grace had dinner, grace told them a story. It was about how Grace and her brother Dumi, were walking with thousands of kids protesting that what they taught the black kids in school was “rubbish”. When the police saw the riot, they started shooting all of the kids they could. Later, helicopters, and tanks came in. The children kept protesting burning down schools and offices. When the riot finally ended, many people were killed, injured or put to jail. Dumi was caught and put to jail, when he got out, he said that he would keep fighting until they killed him. Then, he disappeared and went to another country to study.

This actually happened in real life. It was called the soweto uprising. Many children were killed and sent to jail. Although the protest was to actually not have to learn through the Afrikaan language. In the protest they said “If we must learn in Afrikaan, Vorster must learn Zulu”.

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