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What's Happening in South Africa?

The arrest in July of former president Jacob Zuma in connection with an investigation into widespread corruption sparked an eruption of unrest and violence, mainly in the province of his base, KwaZulu-Natal. Yet the upheaval reflects a broader crisis underpinned by the failures of the African National Congress (ANC) to deliver on the hopes of national liberation, and the neoliberalization and contradictions of the ANC in power. Soaring levels of unemployment and inequality – among the highest on the planet – have been exacerbated by the pandemic and government austerity policies. With the approach of municipal elections in November and an emerging new round of violence, our panelists from the online magazine Africa Is A Country will explore the roots of the crisis and the potential for building left organization and social forces capable of challenging the conditions facing the working class and the poor in South Africa today.



Sean Jacobs is Associate Professor of International Affairs at The New School. Founder and Editor of Africa is a Country. Author of Media in Postapartheid South Africa: Postcolonial Politics in the Age of Globalization (2019). Originally from Cape Town

William Shoki is Staff Writer for Africa Is A Country, and is based in Johannesburg.


Lee Wengraf is author of Extracting Profit: Imperialism, Neoliberalism, and the New Scramble for Africa (Haymarket Books, 2018, re-issued by Daraja Press in 2021). Contributing Editor at the Review of African Political Economy.


This event is sponsored by Africa Is A CountryHaymarket BooksInternationalism From BelowReview of African Political Economy (ROAPE).