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Starring Mandela and CosbyMedia and the End(s) of Apartheid$
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Ron Krabill

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780226451886

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226451909.001.0001

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I May Not Be a Freedom Fighter, but I Play One on TV

I May Not Be a Freedom Fighter, but I Play One on TV

(p.119) Chapter Six I May Not Be a Freedom Fighter, but I Play One on TV
Starring Mandela and Cosby
University of Chicago Press

This chapter extends the analysis into the period of political negotiations, bookended by the release (in 1990) and the inauguration (in 1994) of Mandela, both major international media events in and of themselves. As the moment when the structured absence of Black South Africans from political life is overturned and political contestation over maintaining privilege becomes explicit, this fence post represents a crucial turning point in the overall analysis. Contestation around television, particularly control of the SABC, comes to the fore, with a massive increase in both transnational media flows and innovative domestic programming arising simultaneously with an increase in both the scope and magnitude of political violence. Many assumptions of South African social life suddenly opened up for negotiation at the same time that the nation was being reintegrating into international politics and global economies. This period marks both the demise and the reinvention of apartheid in the contexts of democratization and globalization.

Keywords:   political negotiations, Nelson Mandel, Black South Africans, television, transnational media flows, political violence, democratization, globalization

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