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Abortion Under ApartheidNationalism, Sexuality, and Women's Reproductive Rights in South Africa$
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Susanne M. Klausen

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199844494

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199844494.001.0001

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“South Africa Is Experiencing an All-Out Attack by Permissiveness”

“South Africa Is Experiencing an All-Out Attack by Permissiveness”

Communism, Immorality, and the Disintegration of Apartheid Culture

(p.58) Chapter 2 “South Africa Is Experiencing an All-Out Attack by Permissiveness”
Abortion Under Apartheid

Susanne M. Klausen

Oxford University Press

This chapter explains that by the 1960s, Afrikaner nationalists were convinced white South Africa—supposedly a moral bastion on the so-called Dark Continent—was the target of a conspiracy. The enemy was international communism that aimed to take over the country to secure its lucrative natural resources, a conviction that arose at a time when the cold war was raging and African anti-colonial movements across the continent were gaining ground. To Afrikaner nationalists, communists fomented immorality and “permissiveness” in order to weaken whites’ fortitude, paving the way for a communist takeover. Promiscuity, and abortion’s role in promoting it, was perceived as a serious threat to white survival because the traditional (patriarchal) family was a cornerstone of the racial state. During apartheid, the law dictated that sex could take place only between men and women of the same race, joined in marriage.

Keywords:   Afrikaner nationalism, Communism, Cold war, Anti-colonial movements, Immorality, Permissiveness, Traditional family, Racial state, Promiscuity, Abortion

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