Projects & Programmes
Photographer: Jan Greshoff
Commemorations at District Six Museum
The work of the District Six Museum involves advocating for the significance of personal and collective memories in the lives of people. The public face of this finds expression through commemorative events and rituals.
Some of these follow the calendar of national commemorations which have been inaugurated during South Africa’s move towards democracy; others are specifically District Six-focused, being dates of events significant to the life of the community.
‘Strijdom, Wathinti’abafazi, wathinti’imbokodo.’
(‘Strijdom you have tampered with the women, You have struck a rock.’)
Women’s Day is celebrated on 9 August in South Africa. On this day in 1956, thousands of women marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria to protest against amendments to the already harsh Urban Areas Act.
The Women’s March was a great success, with women from all parts of the country arriving in Pretoria to support the protest. Thousands more were represented in the signatures on the pile of petitions that were to be handed over. Estimates of the number of women delegates ranged from 10 000 to 20 000.
A line from a song composed for the occasion became a slogan for the campaign: ‘Strijdom, Wathinti’abafazi, wathinti’imbokodo.’ (‘Strijdom you have tampered with the women, You have struck a rock.’)
Over the years the Museum has marked Women’s Day in different ways. At times it has created the space for staff who are usually involved in planning and presenting programmes, to attend Women’s Day commemorations elsewhere in the city. At other times it has organised commemorations of its own.
Visit http://www.sahistory.org.za/topic/1956-womens-march-pretoria-9-august for more information about Women’s Day in South Africa