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Author Topic: 7Up South Africa (In 1992 apartheid South Africa)  (Read 15988 times)
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« on: September 24, 2016, 04:21:02 PM »

The South Africa 'Up' Series

7Up South Africa
In 1992 apartheid South Africa, we met 20 lively seven-year-olds. We follow them every seven years in times of change.

22 Jan 2016 06:49 GMT

7Up South Africa

"We have problems, big problems ... like killing each other," said seven-year-old Lunga in 1992, a resident of Durban, South Africa.

Lunga is one of 20 seven-year-olds from all over South Africa - black, white, rich and poor - who is interviewed for this longitudinal series.

The series, based on the award-winning version in Britain, follows these children every seven years, tracking their personal growth against the backdrop of their larger society.

In South Africa, 1992 is a time of violence, conflict and political uncertainty. While the apartheid regime is on its deathbed, it is still two years before Mandela is to become president in the first non-racial elections.

In some of the townships, supporters of rival political groups, the ANC (African National Congress) and Inkatha Freedom Party, are involved in violent clashes, with daily death tolls bringing fear across many parts of the country.

Issues of race dominate as the previously segregated communities anticipate the forthcoming political changes.

Against this backdrop we hear these young children talk candidly about their own families, school life and home lifestyles, and of course they share their views on race, poverty and the political violence that surrounds them.

They are at times funny and cute as they wriggle and giggle, poignant and sad as they talk honestly about their own circumstances, and they are sometimes alarming in their frank, undiluted views. Above all, they give us an extraordinary personal insight into their complex country at that time.

Editor's note: This is part of a series of eight films that follows the characters at age 7, 14, 21 and 28.

This film was first broadcast on Al Jazeera English in November 2013

Posts: 435

« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2016, 06:12:59 PM »

Special Series - 14Up South Africa - Part One
Posts: 435

« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2016, 06:15:31 PM »

21 Up South Africa
Mandela's Children

by Carolyn W. Fanelli

28 September 2008

Featured Documentary - 21Up South Africa - Part Two

At the tender age of seven, Frans already knew who he was and who he wanted to be: “I am poor. I want to be rich. When you are poor, you struggle”. Would his lot in life improve? Now 21, Frans is proud that his home in a Johannesburg, South Africa, township has acquired an inside toilet, a fridge and a TV. Yet, gesturing towards the wealthy neighborhood in the distance, he proclaims, “These people live a life of luxury. And that’s what you want. That’s what I am dying for. I am striving for it”. What will Frans say—and on which side of the divide will he live—seven years later when he turns 28?

The ability to watch people’s personalities develop as they grow up; to ponder how their education, family, friends, culture and community will influence them; to guess correctly and to be completely surprised—so sums up the addictive appeal of Michael Apted’s Up Series and its spin-offs, including this DVD, 21 Up South Africa: Mandela’s Children.

Apted has captured the lives of 14 Brits since 1964, when at first they were seven-years-old. His original film was called 7 Up; 14 Up followed seven years later. The latest installment, 49 Up, came out in 2005. Director Angus Gibson brought the Up series premise to South Africa in 1992, with 7 Up in South Africa.

The country was in the midst of a profound transition—it was two years after Nelson Mandela had been released from prison and two years before he would become the country’s first black president. The 14 young people Gibson selected for his film were destined to grow up in a South Africa that was shedding its apartheid history and forging a multi-racial future, while also dealing with the inter-related crisis of crime, poverty, and the HIV pandemic. The group includes blacks, whites, Indians and people of mixed race, all from very different backgrounds.

How, at age 21, will they have coped with life’s challenges? Watching 21 Up South Africa, you feel part voyeur, part social anthropologist.

By 2006, three of the 14 have died of AIDS-related illnesses. The others are carving out their adult identities—going to college, looking for jobs, getting married, having children. Only two seem truly self-assured: Willem aspires to become a player for the Springboks (South Africa’s beloved national rugby team) and is pursuing a degree in sports management; Claudia is studying science with the hope of transferring to med school....

Read more: http://www.popmatters.com/review/21-up-south-africa-mandelas-children/#ixzz4LDKi0VqM
Posts: 435

« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2016, 06:17:37 PM »

28 Up South Africa – TV review
Haunted by disease and death, the fourth visit to the 'children' of the post-Apartheid era is a hymn to the human spirit

By Lucy Mangan

Thursday 5 December 2013 07.00 GMT

Documentaries 28 Up South Africa was made in 2016 Documentary

Michael Apted's Up series of documentaries which return to the same group of children every seven years throughout their lives has been retooled for numerous countries and last night in 28 Up South Africa (ITV1) we caught up with the children there. They turned seven in 1992, two years after Mandela was released from prison, making them first-hand witnesses to the country under and since his presidency.

In many ways, the Up projects are more like geological studies than sociological research. The cores of the people involved stay the same – the rest is shaped by time and the different pressures brought to bear on them.

Willem, a cheerful, stolid boy, is now a cheerful, stolid Springbok and household name, married to his university sweetheart who is expecting their first child. The boy who planned to beat up the black students due to arrive at his just-desegregated school until he met them and realised that "they are very good people, I didn't expect that" has, thanks to that exposure and perhaps also to his insulation from the resentments felt by his Afrikaner compatriots over the country's changes, matured along the best lines.

Lizette is the same brusquely forthright soul now threatening to curdle into bitterness after a brutal divorce battle, money troubles and business worries aggravated by the crumbling of South Africa's infrastructure – or at least of the infrastructure of the South Africa she knew. "Everything has changed since I was seven. Money … used to be allocated correctly; it used to be spent correctly. Now everything has gone haywire." Though she described Mandela as having been a good president ("His vision was not wrong. It just never happened"), she was the only one who you felt might, if pushed, give vent to some of the more toxic elements still to work their way out of the country's system. Whether it was fair or unfair, honest or dishonest, of the film-makers not to push her I cannot decide.

The decision of Katlego's football-star father to use his money to send his son to St George's, an elite, private, overwhelmingly white school has paid the dividends he hoped for. Katlego has a good job as a market analyst, has good friends and moves in comfortable circles. How much he has lost in the process depends on how much store you put in staying true to your roots and how much you read into the downcast eyes of the seven-year-old Katlego just after he had left his Soweto home for St George's.

Full article: https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2013/dec/05/28-up-south-africa-review

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