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History of the global anti-apartheid movement has lessons on international solidarity for a world in crisis

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Liliesleaf Site of Memory and Consciousness exhibitions put the spotlight on the story of how international solidarity gave birth to the transnational anti-apartheid movement, which was pivotal in the South African liberation struggle. The networks, organisations and forms of collective action created still have an impact on national and transnational political cultures.

ANC strategy during the 1970s and 1980s, with its leadership mostly in prison or in exile, was defined by what was called the “Four Pillars” of struggle: mass mobilisation, the armed struggle, underground organisation and international solidarity work. It is widely acknowledged that the support of the international community – the fourth pillar of struggle – was a critical success factor in the ANC victory in 1994.

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For Your Immediate Attention

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On the 28h of September 2020, Liliesleaf announced with great joy and relief that as from the 1st October the historical site would reopen to the public for 3 days a week. 

However, it is now with deep sadness and regrets that due to the impact and consequence of COVID-19 Liliesleaf once again has unfortunately been compelled to close to the public until further notice. 

Should you have any questions or require any further information please email Lulamile Zulu at Once again we thank you for your support and concern during these unprecedented times.

Preserving Memory and Meaning

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“The first step in liquidating a people is to erase its memory. Destroy its books, its culture, its history. Before long the nation will begin to forget what it is and what it was.” — Milan Kundera

The Covid-19 pandemic has thrown the world into turmoil and confusion. In the process, we have been propelled into the unknown. What was once considered “normal” is no longer considered such. The impact of the pandemic has been felt worldwide and has affected all sectors of society.

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We’re Facing a Serious Cash Crisis

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Liliesleaf Farm Museum is facing a serious cash crisis. Nicholas Wolpe, the CEO of Liliesleaf, said he would be devastated if the museum were to close. The farm, located in Rivonia, Johannesburg, is where the Communist Party of South Africa had its headquarters in the 1960s and the then-banned ANC had its underground meetings.

“It evolved from being the secret headquarters of the Communist Party into first the newly High Command or the newly formed uMkhonto we Sizwe,” said Wolpe, who described the farm as the “nerve centre” of the liberation fight. “It was a place of activity. It was a place of dialogue, with a place of engagement, a place of debate, it is where we planned the overthrow of apartheid,” he said.

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