Fifty Years of the South African Institute of Race Relations

  • Ellen Hellmann


The South African Institute of Race Relations was born half a century ago in a climate of thought, both national and international, utterly different from that of today. White rule had been firmly imposed over vast areas of the globe during the centuries in which the leading European powers had established their colonial empires. Over these areas colonialism, sustained by the mystique of white superiority, still held sway, despite the growing resentment of the subject peoples against imperialist rule. In Africa, apart from the then Union of South Africa, the only independent states were Egypt, Ethiopia and Liberia. On the map of Africa all the remaining territories were shaded in different colours to indicate which of the colonial powers ruled over their destinies. The race question was not, as it was to become after the Second World War, a dominant issue leading to wars of liberation from colonial bondage and a crucial factor in the conduct of international relations.


Racial Group Black Student Race Relation Ford Foundation Franchise System 
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Copyright information

© South African Institute of Race Relations 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ellen Hellmann

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