Close

Support Global Voices

To stay independent, free, and sustainable, our community needs the help of friends and readers like you.

Donate now »

See all those languages up there? We translate Global Voices stories to make the world's citizen media available to everyone.

Learn more about Lingua Translation  »

#Iam76 Honors South African Students Killed During Apartheid-Era Soweto Uprising

A photo of Soweto where the protests began before they spread in other parts of the country. Photo released under Creative Commons by Flickr user Michael Denne.

A photo of Soweto where the protests began before they spread in other parts of the country. Photo released under Creative Commons by Flickr user Michael Denne.

The hashtags #Iam76 and #June16 trended in South Africa this week as many South Africans remembered the Soweto Uprising of June 16, 1976.

The iconic image taken by South African photojournalist Sam Nzima of Antoinette Sithole and Mbuyisa Makhubo carrying and 12-year-old Hector Pieterson  after he was shot by South African police.

The iconic image by South African photojournalist Sam Nzima of Antoinette Sithole and Mbuyisa Makhubo carrying 12-year-old Hector Pieterson after he was shot by South African police.

On that day, high school students in Soweto began protesting against the introduction of Afrikaans as the language of instruction in local schools as part of the Afrikaans Medium Decree of 1974.

The number of those who died from live bullets from the apartheid government police is estimated to be up to 700.

The uprising and the killing of students led to strikes by black workers and riots in other black townships in South Africa and ignited calls for tougher international sanctions.

Taking to Twitter to remember the day, Levi Kabwato, a Zimbabwean activist based in South Africa, shared a poem written by Zimbabwean author Dambudzo Marechera about the uprising:

Advocating for youth empowerment, Ndzavi Derrick advised:

On the same subject of youth empowerment, Qhuba Gumbi-Dlamini wrote:

Zenaida Machado shared a cartoon showing the difference between ‘selfless generation’ of the 1970s and today's ‘selfie generation':

South Africans should not forget the cost of their freedom, wrote Alex Jay:

Start the conversation

Authors, please log in »

Guidelines

  • All comments are reviewed by a moderator. Do not submit your comment more than once or it may be identified as spam.
  • Please treat others with respect. Comments containing hate speech, obscenity, and personal attacks will not be approved.

Receive great stories from around the world directly in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the best of Global Voices
* = required field
Email Frequency



No thanks, show me the site