Programs - South Africa

Shared Histories: The United States and South Africa

Shared Histories: The United States and South Africa was developed by the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at Yale University to provide teachers from United States and South Africa the opportunity to engage in classroom-to-classroom activities exploring the histories of their respective countries. ten teachers from the United States were selected to work with ten teachers from the greater Johannesburg area in South Africa.

On 7-19 July, 2018, ten teachers from Connecticut and ten teachers from Johannesburg, South Africa met at South Africa’s National Apartheid Museum for a workshop on the history and legacies of Apartheid led by Yale University professor Daniel Magaziner, an historian of 20th century southern Africa. In addition to formal instruction, teachers heard from South African historians and activists and visited important historical and cultural sites. The workshop coincided with centenary celebrations honoring Nelson Mandela’s birth on July, 18th, 1918.

Since then, these teachers have been developing classroom-to-classroom projects and programming. In October, 2018, the Connecticut teachers presented some of their projects at the Connecticut Council for the Social Studies’ annual meeting.

Teachers from South Africa will be invited to visit the United States in July, 2019 for a second workshop, which their U.S. counterparts will also be attending. The focus of that workshop will be the history of the “Black Struggle for Freedom and Justice.”