South Africa’s home policy and its foreign relations : a study of transitions since 1990

Whytock, Ian Alexander (2015-03)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2015.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This thesis is a study of South African transitions. A transition, within the context of South African contemporary history, usually refers to the period in the early 1990s when South Africa underwent a negotiated transition from racial minority rule to a full democracy in 1994. This thesis takes a liberal understanding of South Africa’s transition timeline and is not confined just to South Africa’s political transition, but also examines transitions within transitions. This will be done through three studies beginning with a survey of the global political transitions that took place against the backdrop of South Africa’s domestic political transition in the early 1990s. Secondly, we will look at the role that national historical identity plays in diplomacy and international relations and, more specifically, at the cultivation of a new historic identity in South Africa’s international relations. Lastly, we will examine the policy transitions that came in the “new” South Africa through a case study of the nationalization debate. All three of these focuses will be studied through the lens of South Africa’s foreign relations with China and the United States which provides a unique vantage point for viewing the complexities. The goal of this thesis is to develop a broader understanding of transitions in South Africa and the role that the United States and China played in them. As this theme is interrogated, some of the continuities and discontinuities will be exposed between the “old” and “new” South Africa.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie tesis bestudeer Suid-Afrikaanse transisies. 'n Transisie, binne die konteks van kontemporêre Suid-Afrikaanse geskiedenis, verwys gewoonlik na die tydperk van die vroeë 1990's toe Suid-Afrika 'n bemiddelde oorgang ondergaan het vanaf radikale minderheidsbewind na 'n volledige demokrasie in 1994. Hierdie tesis neem 'n liberale benadering tot die tydperk waarbinne hier periode beskou word en is nie beperk tot slegs Suid-Afrika se politieke transisie nie, maar ondersoek ook transisies binne-in transisies. Dit sal gedoen word deur drie ondersoeke, wat begin met 'n oorsig van die wêreldwye politieke transisies wat op daardie stadium plaasgevind het teen die agtergrond van Suid-Afrika se binnelandse politieke transisie van die 1990's. Tweedens sal ons kyk na die rol wat nasionale historiese identiteit speel in diplomatiese en internasionale verhoudinge en, meer spesifiek, die kultivering van 'n nuwe nasionale historiese identiteit in Suid-Afrika se internasionale verhoudinge. Laastens beskou ons die beleidstransisies wat ingekom het in die "nuwe" Suid-Afrika. Dit word gedoen deur 'n gevallestudie van Suid-Afrika se debat oor nasionalisering. Al drie hierdie fokusse sal beskou word deur die lens van Suid-Afrika se verhoudinge met Sjina en die Verenigde State. Hierdie verhoudinge verskaf 'n unieke oogpunt waar rondom die kompleksiteite van hierdie debat beskou kan word. Die doel van hierdie tesis is om 'n breër verstandhouding te skep waarin Suid-Afrika se transisies beskou kan word. Soos hierdie tema ondersoek word, word van die kontinuïteite en diskontinuïteite van die "ou" en "nuwe" Suid-Afrika ontbloot.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/97129
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