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ISA2110 - South Africa: Democracy and Development

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Arts

Leader: Dr Iain Edwards


South Africa Second semester 2007 (Day)


This unit is a survey course on the history and politics of South Africa's long transition from colonial capitalist development through the period of the Apartheid regime to constitutional democracy. The challenges faced by the new state and society to achieve the dual but complex tasks of deepening mass-based legitimate participatory democracy and securing sustainable development for all citizens are placed within an international context, comparing South Africa's modern history to that of other new and democratising states and raising up scholarly debates over these essential challenges confronting all new states.


The objectives of this Unit are to provide students with the following types of information and academic and professional skills:

  1. Intellectual familiarity with the main conceptual issues relevant to the Unit: democracy, nationalism, development and under development, theories and concepts relating to late developing states, political parties and civil society and key terms in international affairs: ie. globalization, unilateralism, bilateralism and multilateralism
  2. Knowledge of the main events, processes, issues, personalities, ideas and politics in the modern history of South Africa
  3. An understanding of the relationships between the South African state and society and wider global politics and international relations
  4. An understanding of the main currents in wider political discourses, within South Africa and internationally, concerning new states, democracy and development in the contemporary post 1945 and post-Cold War worlds
  5. An understanding of the main currents within academic debate, within South Africa and internationally, concerning South Africa's modern history and politics and its place within in the modern world
  6. Experience in working with and understanding the different characteristics of various forms of evidence, both primary and secondary, documentary, oral and visual
  7. Experience in conducting research using both primary and secondary sources
  8. improving oral, writing, presentation and debating styles
  9. Students undertaking this unit at a third-year level will be expected to meet all these objective criteria at a higher level of demonstrable and proven competency than those completing the unit at a second-year level


One primary source document analysis essay (1000 words): 20%
one essay on scholarly debates (1000 words): 20%
one general topic essay (2000 words): 40%
tutorial (oral) presentation (500 words): 10% +
tutorial (oral) presentation (500 words): 10%

Contact hours

Two one-hour lectures and one one-hour tutorial per week for twelve weeks


INT1010 and INT1020


INT3110, ISA3110