‘We are building a nation and making history’1 Alfred Xuma assumed the ANC presidency at a time of rapid change in South Africa. Following impassioned debate in the white parliament, South Africa had entered World War II on the side of Britain on 4 September 1939. Among the most significant by-products of the war was South Africa’s dramatic industrial growth, especially in mining, steel, and textiles. Such growth led to a 57 per cent increase in the number of Africans working in manufacturing between 1939–45. Understandably, urbanization grew side by side with industrialization.
KeywordsPrime Minister Communist Party Civil Disobedience South African Government African People
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