We've got news for you.

Register on BusinessLIVE at no cost to receive newsletters, read exclusive articles & more.
Register now

The founding father of the Black Consciousness movement, Steve Biko, famously said: The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed. This week, on the 12th of September 39 years ago, Steve Biko was killed in a Pretoria detention cell, while in police custody. He died for his principles, his ideals, something the apartheid government feared greatly because he was so reasonable, because his arguments were so coherent. The fundamental tenet of his Black Consciousness philosophy was that being black is not a matter of pigmentation but rather a reflection of a mental attitude. That was why, he said, liberation was of paramount importance in the concept of Black Consciousness. It wasn’t about being above or below, but equal to absolutely everything and everyone. Like Nelson Mandela, he wanted a society in which all South Africans, black, brown and white, lived side by side in harmony. I was in my first year at Rhodes University in 1977, an innocent learni...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as articles from our international business news partners; ProfileData financial data; and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email helpdesk@businesslive.co.za or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now