Post-Apartheid, South Africa, Political Culture
Between 1994 and 2004 the African National Congress (ANC) dominated government at every level of every branch. As a result, the checks and balances that are a necessary part of any democracy were non-existent. Understanding the powerful position they occupied, the ANC increasingly acted on its own accordance without any regard for the wishes of the South African populace. This lack of public consideration, coupled with the failure to economically redistribute wealth among the vast unemployed majority, turned an optimistic political culture with mass participation in 1994 into a disillusioned political culture with reduced political participation in 2004. These economic failures, along with the rise in crime and political corruption that dominated South African politics, eroded the optimism and trust that for a short time was prevalent in South Africa. Instead, the post-apartheid political culture of South Africa resembled what it did for all of those decades under apartheid: one of disillusionment and non-participation. The following thesis will argue that during the decade following 1994, South Africans became increasingly frustrated and disillusioned with government as the divide between the small-upper class and the large-proletariat continually expanded. The various explanations for the expansion of this divide will be presented along with survey information, which will attempt to garner what the South African public perceives to be; 1) the primary threat to the long-term stability of democracy, 2) the effectiveness of government between 1994 and 2004. Most importantly, the surveys will ask South Africans who voted in 1994 but not in 2004 the reason for not voting in order to fully understand the specific cause for the decline in political participation.
Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Kinsell, Andrew, "Post-apartheid Political Culture In South Africa, 1994-2004" (2009). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 4084.