“Oiling the Machinery”: Recruitment and Conversion in Alexandra’s Underground Movement

  • Dawne Y. Curry


During a routine and highly secretive recruiting trip in South Africa’s Northwestern Province activists Simon “Bafana” Mohlanyaneng1 and David Ramusi approached 15-year-old Solomon Baloyi, who was on his way back from attending a soccer match in rural Jonathan. The operatives planned to extend Alexandra’s theatre of operation by gauging the interest of this fertile ground. Their chances were optimized by the schools being closed. The student uprising had swept the nation into an orgy of violence and protests. Pupils had taken to the streets, as they had no classes to attend, so Bafana seized this opportunity to impress upon Baloyi that he should join the armed struggle as many of his own colleagues had done.


Military Training Soccer Match Political Education Apartheid Regime Safe House 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 6.
    Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela (Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1994), 144.Google Scholar
  2. 10.
    Gregory Houston and Bernard Magubane, “The ANC Political Underground,” in The Road to Democracy in South Africa, Volume 2, 1970–1980, South African Democracy Education Trust (Cape Town: Zebra Press, 2004), 402.Google Scholar
  3. 18.
    Michael Dingake, My Fight against Apartheid, (London: Kliptown Books, 1987), 61.Google Scholar
  4. 19.
    Fran Lisa Buntman, Robben Island and Prisoner Resistance to Apartheid, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003). Political prisoners used their incarceration to reconcile differences between political organizations, to teach the youth about resistance, to forward information to the outside world, to take correspondence courses, and to remake the environment in which they lived.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 29.
    Allen Feldman, Formations of Violence: The Narrative of the Body and Political Terror in Northern Ireland (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1991), 44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 32.
    Elias Masilela, Number 43 Trelawney Park: Kwa Magogo (Cape Town: New Africa Books, 2011), 99.Google Scholar
  7. 35.
    George Ritzer and Douglas J. Goodman, Sociological Theory, 6th edition (Boston: McGraw Hill, 2004), 176–177.Google Scholar
  8. 50.
    Antonio Gramsci, Selections from the Prison Notebooks of Antonio Gramsci (New York: International Publishers Company, 1971).Google Scholar
  9. 51.
    Frantz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth (New York: Grove Press, 2005).Google Scholar
  10. 52.
    Karl Marx, Das Kapital (London: Synergy International Publishers, 2007).Google Scholar
  11. 64.
    Donald L. Barnett and Karari Njama, Mau Mau from Within: An Analysis of Kenya’s Peasant Revolt (New York: Modern Reader Paperbacks, 1966), 117–118.Google Scholar
  12. 86.
    David Martin and Phyllis Johnson, The Struggle for Zimbabwe: The Chimurenga War (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1981), 77–78.Google Scholar
  13. See also David Lan, Guns and Rains: Spirit Mediums in Zimbabwe (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1985).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Dawne Y. Curry 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dawne Y. Curry

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations