Soweto

From Academic Kids

Johannesburg, including Soweto, from the
Johannesburg, including Soweto, from the International Space Station

Soweto is an urban area in Johannesburg, in Gauteng province South Africa. The name Soweto is a contraction of "South Western Townships" and does not mean anything besides this in any South African language.

Contents

History

In 1950 during the apartheid regime, Soweto was constructed to be self-sufficent for the specific purpose of housing African people who were then living in areas designated by the government for white settlement (such as the multi-racial area called Sophiatown). It began as a grouping of the farms Doornkop, Klipriviersoog, Diepkloof, Klipspruit and Vogelstruisfontein.

Missing image
Soweto_Riots.jpg
Famous photograph of the Soweto Riots.

Soweto came to the world's attention in 1976, when riots broke out over the government's decision to enforce education in Afrikaans rather than English. See History of South Africa.

A series of bombs rocked Soweto in October 2002. The explosions, believed to be the work of the Boeremag, a right wing extremist group, damaged buildings and railway lines, and killed one person.

Demographics

Today's Soweto, incorporating Orlando, Dobsonville, Diepkloof and Dube, remains an overwhelmingly black-dominated city with over three million people.

Economy

Today, Soweto is among the poorest parts of Johannesburg, however there have been recent signs of economic improval and Soweto has become a centre for nightlife.

Miscellaneous

Soweto was the birthplace of:

Current and past residents include:

See also

External Link

  • "Soweto Uplifting" (http://www.monolith.com.au/soweto/index.html) Travel story by Roderick Eime


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