“If you want change, you must stand up for it. Not just as a once-off protest, but to stay the course until you reach the goal.”
Dr Mamphela Ramphele

Black Sash


This guide, a compilation of thousands of entries detailing Black Sash archival material housed in several South African institutions, was created by a joint project of the Black Sash and the University of Cape Town Libraries. 

It lists documents, press clippings, photographs and publications held at UCT, the University of the Witwatersrand, the Killie Campbell Africana Library, the Cory Library for Historical Research (Rhodes University), UNISA and the Alan Paton Centre. It is available in electronic format at these various repositories as well as on the Black Sash website. 

The task of building this catalogue has been supported by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The compilers are very grateful for this, and for the assistance received from the various repositories. 

The guide is a chronicle, in outline, of the history of the Black Sash’s involvement in South Africa’s struggle for freedom and justice and its work in the service of human rights. It sheds light on many aspects of South Africa’s history. 

It must be seen as a work in progress, since further work will be required. There is additional material held in other repositories and there are further private collections which could enrich this guide. There is also considerable further documentation covering the casework of the Black Sash’s advice offices as well as the records of the organization since it changed its structure after 1994. 

Nevertheless, it should already be a useful tool for researchers in identifying where relevant sources regarding the Black Sash and its work are held. 

Mary Burton 

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