Download An African American in South Africa: the travel notes of by Ralph J. Bunche PDF

By Ralph J. Bunche

ISBN-10: 1868142175

ISBN-13: 9781868142170

Ralph Bunche, who bought the Nobel Peace Prize in 1950, traveled to South Africa for 3 months in 1937. His notes, which were skillfully compiled and annotated through historian Robert R. Edgar, offer designated insights on a segregated society.

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Additional resources for An African American in South Africa: the travel notes of Ralph J. Bunche, 28 September 1937-1 January 1938

Sample text

He and Schapera contacted a highly placed friend, South African Minister of Interior Jan Hofmeyr, about his plight. Their appeals bore fruit and Schapera wrote Bunche that Pretoria had cabled its London embassy with the permission for Bunche to enter South Africa. When Bunche went to the embassy on 25 June, Scallon informed him he had heard nothing. Bunche proceeded to show him Schapera's letter, and when Scallon called for Bunche's file, he found Hofmeyr's cable in it. He made a feeble excuse about his work overload and then lectured Bunche again on South African race relations.

1 I was immediately curious why Bunche, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1950 for his role as a United Nations mediator in the Middle East, had visited South Africa in the first place. 2 Only after further digging did I learn that Bunche, a professor of political science at Howard University in the 1930s, had stopped off in South Africa for three months during a two-year, round-the-world research odyssey funded by the Social Science Research Council. The purpose of his journey was not research per se but instead to hone his fieldwork skills by studying the methodology used by anthropologists to study culture contact between Western and non-Western societies.

17 Bunche leveled his sharpest criticism at reformist black organizations such as the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the National Urban League whose focus on civil Page 8 and political rights won meager gains at too much cost and appealed more to the small black middle class than to the much larger black working class. " 18 He also disparaged former NAACP official W. E. B. DuBois's ideas on black self-determination as hopelessly misguided. "19 In addition, he belittled as an escapist fantasy the strategy of blacks advancing themselves through black-owned businesses.

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