Student activism is being sabotaged and this is why it matters


Students have been at the forefront of social and political change throughout modern history. From supporting the anti-apartheid struggle, to standing against racism and against the Vietnam War, student participation has become more crucial than ever for any progressive movement. We see this in today’s movement for Palestine, as students at numerous universities lead campaigns for the boycott of and divestment from Israel.

In South Africa, June 16 is Youth Day. The day commemorates the Soweto Uprising during Apartheid in 1976, where students took the lead in protesting against the Afrikaans Medium Decree. The decree required black schools to use Afrikaans as the medium of instruction from the final year of primary school until graduation – another discriminatory policy intended to undermine the identity of black South Africans through suppressing their indigenous language.

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