This year students from the African Centre for Migration & Society (ACMS) elective Masters and Honours course ‘Critical perspectives on labour and livelihoods’ undertook a field study trip to the Workers Museum in Newtown, Johannesburg. The ten students from ACMS and the EMMIR program at the University of Oldenburg learnt about the history of labour migration to South Africa during and after apartheid, engaged with the museum staff and critically reflected on the role migrant workers in the region’s politics and economy.
Afterwards, students wrote an opinion piece on their visit. The best piece was titled “Workers Museum: the Precarity of ‘Guest’ Work” by Fernando Hernandez in which he engaged with his teased out the exploitative and oppressive nature that migrant workers faced drawing in his own experience as a Mexican American.
Below you can read some of the other submissions by the students:
- Intra-racial inequalities between South Africans and workers from other African countries: a phenomenon with a long history, By Thorsten Löffler
- Workers in Brazil and South Africa, By Renata Campielo
- Shadows of Apartheid Linger, By Prisca Udensi
- Feedback on tour, By Patrick Thantsha
- Personal experiences on the workers museum, By Chido Muzanenhamo