Welcome to the site for Social Movements in South Africa a George Mason University short-term study abroad program!

This course will examine South Africa or the “Rainbow Nation“, which was given the nickname because of the many cultures and histories that have come together to create a vibrant democracy. However, South Africa did not always embrace the many colors of its rainbow. Social movements have played an important part in the country’s history and new and emerging political parties are using rhetoric in surprising and skillful ways to frame their arguments. It is not possible to truly understand the current arguments and struggles without looking at South Africa’s past and those who are still living with the repercussions. To help us achieve this understanding, we will explore the monuments to the Afrikaans settlers in Pretoria, the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg, and neighborhoods where residents were forcibly removed during Apartheid. We will also visit current vibrant neighborhoods like Maboneng in Johannesburg, where all of the businesses are locally owned and operated. We will visit with residents in the Oliver Tambo township in Cape Town and attend church with them. The trip will offer students a complex view of South Africa as not only the Rainbow Nation, but also a nation of extremes and complexities.

Click here for a full program schedule