The discovery of gold and diamonds in South Africa in 1870 brought about immense change that would affect the region and its people forever. The mineral discovery was a catalyst for the region to become a significant contributor to the worlds’ economy. The discovery brought about a lucrative mining industry that paved the way for thousands of jobs and the expansion of territories in the interior such as Kimberley, known as the city of diamonds, as well as in Transvaal with the city of Johannesburg. Even with the influx of jobs and a new economy, old tensions still remained at the forefront of society. The unresolved conflicts over land and labor were being heightened as the British whites began to conquer previously independent territories, such as the Zulu Kingdom in 1879, in order to force the black worker into an exploited, cheap labor force. Leonard Thompson highlights this in his book A History of South Africa when he says, “Whites were incorporating Africans into a capitalist, white-dominated economy. Many Africans were obliged to pay rent, or to provide the labor services for the right to live on land that whites had appropriated” (Thompson 111). The affects of the racially separatist movement paved the way for further racial discrimination to occur with the passing of the color ban in the South African Act by the British parliament and can also be tied with the apartheid laws that plagued South Africa in the second half of the 19th century.
The British imperialism of South Africa reached its height in the 1870s as they continued to annex territories as they saw local tensions over the mining industry heighten. The British were experiencing a fast economic ascent yet they wanted to gain a monopoly over the industry. In order to gain a monopoly over the region they began to appropriate the black Africans land. They received the backing of the white farmers and businesspeople, traders... [continues]
Cite This Essay
(2010, 12). 1870 South Africa. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 12, 2010, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/1870-South-Africa-515331.html
"1870 South Africa" StudyMode.com. 12 2010. 12 2010 <http://www.studymode.com/essays/1870-South-Africa-515331.html>.
"1870 South Africa." StudyMode.com. 12, 2010. Accessed 12, 2010. http://www.studymode.com/essays/1870-South-Africa-515331.html.