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Seminar Series


Please join us for the first seminar in the History Workshop’s Seminar Series.



Title:               Yusuf Dadoo, India and South Africa’s liberation struggle


Date:              Wednesday, 14 February @ 13h15-14h15 in room 207, 2nd floor, Robert Sobukwe Block, East Campus, Wits University


Speaker:        Dr Arianna Lissoni

Arianna is a researcher in the History Workshop. She is one of the editors of the South African Historical Journal, and her research and writing are on South African liberation struggle history.


Abstract:       This paper focuses on India’s solidarity with the liberation struggle in South Africa in the 1960s and early 1970s. India played a key role in the internationalisation of the South African freedom cause, and the birth of a global anti-apartheid movement can be dated back to 1946, when India took up the issue of the treatment of South African Indians at the inaugural session of the United Nations. The opening of an office or mission by the ANC in New Delhi in 1967 is another important demonstration of the Indian government’s commitment to South Africa’s liberation, at a delicate time when the liberation movement had turned to armed struggle, while at the same time suffering major blows in South Africa and having to adapt to new and difficult exile conditions. However, the paper tries to understand India’s place in the global anti-apartheid movement beyond the level of international diplomacy, to which international solidarity is often reduced. It does so by analysing this history of solidarity through the lens of Yusuf Dadoo’s biography. Based on ANC documents, archival letters to Mota (as Dadoo was popularly known) by a mysterious ‘Raj Kumar’ and recent interviews, the paper shows how India was part of a transnational network - with Dadoo at its centre – that sought to rebuild internal political resistance against the apartheid state in the light of the resolutions adopted at the 1969 Morogoro conference.



If you would like to present at one of our seminars or join the mailing list, please contact: or call (011) 717 4291 

Below is a list of seminars previously hosted by the History Workshop:

2016 Seminars

2015 Seminars

2014 Seminars 

2013 Seminars

2012 Seminars