The role of education in land restitution, redistribution and restrictions as individual, group and national empowerment through land reform
Yeni, Clementine Sibongile
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This study is focused on the role of education to improve awareness of two critically important aspects of the South African situation 19 years after the first democratic elections in 1994. In the first instance, the study aims to augment the grades 10-12 Life Orientation curriculum to promote understanding and appreciation of land rights as human rights for every citizen in South Africa to address the social injustices of the past. In the second instance, the study focuses on grades 10-12 Agricultural Sciences curriculum to ensure that every learner who leaves school is in a position to care for land responsibly, and to use land productively for his or her own benefit and the benefit of others in the future. These foci have been informed by numerous interactions with people in four small communities on the Southern KwaZulu-Natal coast, who have been victims of landless as a result of the Group Areas act of 1960, and are claiming restitution for the land lost, and are required by law to make the restituted land productive. The study records first hand stories told about land ownership, landless, land claims, land restitution, and land (ab)use stories, in the form of narratives, such as autobiographies, auto-ethnographies, accounts of action research and self study. My research participants and I are the authors of our land stories. We tell our stories as a way of making the private public in the interests of a fair and just society. The forms of presentation include narratives, dialogues, playlets, literary references and critical reflections. The perspectives used include the native worldview, rurality as a dynamic, generative and variable milieu, the orality-literacy interface, the effect of oppression, and values and beliefs, customs and mores which (in)form a civil and civilised society. During the course of the study, the role of stories to reveal what is happening in the lives of those people most affected by unjust laws, and to empower them to take action in their own best interests became evident. The major role of education in land reforms cannot be overemphasized, which is why I have used what I have discovered from the many interactions with many people to inform two grades 10-12 school curricula: the grades 10-12 Life Orientation curriculum and the grades 10-12 Agricultural Sciences curriculum .