“Multinational sport participation replaces apartheid sport in South Africa - 1967 - 1978”: the role of BJ Vorster and PGJ Koornhof.
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The sport declarations of TE Dönges as Minister of Internal Affairs in June 1956 and those of HF Verwoerd as Prime Minister in 1965 were aimed at strengthening apartheid sport participation in South Africa. These declarations were in reaction to increased international and local pressure on the National Party (NP) to allow integrated sport participation. However, they contributed to increased political and economic isolation as well as isolation on the sports grounds. In reaction to this increasing isolation BJ Vorster and P Koornhof formulated an evolutionary sport policy since 1967 in an effort to counteract increased international isolation. These efforts by Vorster and Koornhof have been interpreted by many critics and researchers as being the product of continuous international and local pressures on the NP and its policy of Apartheid. This article, however, argues that although the evolutionary sport policy could be interpreted as cosmetic, tactical and strategic moves, it also demonstrated important small changes in the normal thinking patterns of the NP elite. The policy changes as reflected in the evolutionary sport policy were the result of nuanced changes in the thinking of the NP regarding the policy of apartheid. These changes in thinking were not so much the result of external and local pressures but were merely encouraged by it. These changes in thinking led the way for increased social integration and complemented increased apartheid policy reforms since 1978.
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