Apartheid in South Africa



Use the background information, your knowledge of history, and the document to answer the questions that follow.

Background Information: The text of this political poster describes conditions for black South Africans under apartheid. (You do not need to read the text to answer the prompt.) The photo on the poster shows 13-year-old Hector Pieterson, the first student killed by police in the 1976 Soweto Uprising, being carried by another student.


Title: “Apartheid in Practice: Law & Order in South Africa”
David King

Question 1: How are the social conditions depicted in the photograph connected to European colonial rule of South Africa?

Question 2: How are the social conditions depicted in the photograph connected to a law passed by the United States Congress in 1986 that imposed economic sanctions on South Africa?

About the Assessment

Like Connections to the Philippine-American War, this assessment gauges students' knowledge of the past.  Rather than measure whether students can simply recall decontextualized facts, this assessment requires students to make connections across time and construct an argument about how events are connected. Students with a strong sense of the past will be able to explain that the social conditions of apartheid grew out of racial oppression instituted during European colonial rule of South Africa.  Strong students will also explain that social conditions like those depicted in the photograph led the United States Congress to impose economic sanctions against South Africa in an effort to bring an end to the policy of apartheid.