The emergence and radicalisation of black political formations in Kroonstad, 1915 to 1957.
MetadataShow full item record
From the beginning of the 1920s to the 1950s Kroonstad witnessed the emergence of black radical formations, although this happened intermittently. The inaction of the ANC in the 1920s provided the ICU with space to infuse its radical protest methods in this town. This caused members of Kroonstad black community, particularly women, to challenge the Kroonstad Town Council after it had hiked rents in the late 1920s. This was unheard of in Kroonstad, and it undoubtedly left a lasting impression on some of the residents. This was reflected later when some of the residents openly defied the Council. For a brief moment, after the demise of the ICU, moderate formations like the Native Advisory Board (NAB) and the Joint Council of Europeans and Natives (JCEN) filled the political space in Kroonstad. However, after several unsuccessful attempts to challenge the Kroonstad Town Council’s unpopular decisions on behalf of the residents of Kroonstad’s black locations, they ceased to exist. The early 1950s saw the revival and emergence of another black radical formation led by women, resisting the government’s Abolition of Passes and Coordination of Documents Act of 1952. The women in Kroonstad mobilised and demonstrated against this law. Although the government responded swiftly and crushed the women’s resistance and forced them to carry passes, it was not, however, able to totally eradicate the radical ideas which had been infused by the black radical formations in Kroonstad over the years.