The political economy of land, mining and rural democracy – planning a 4.5 day course


Course manual cover

This 4.5 day learning programme has been designed for activists associated with the Alliance for Rural Democracy (ARD) – together with other progressive movements and formations – that seek to defend and advance the rights of rural citizens in the former Bantustans.

The course aims to critically examine the historical and contemporary struggles of rural people to resist and reverse:

  • the dispossession of land and loss of rural livelihoods;
  • the imposition of unrepresentative and unaccountable leadership based on distorted renderings of ‘custom’ and ‘tradition’;
  • the elite capture of mineral rights, wealth and power.

The course seeks to locate these local struggles within the fast changing national, regional and global political and economic context. It aims to equip activists with essential knowledge of history, policy and law as a contribution to a broader process of social mobilisation to contest the undermining of rural democracy and the further erosion of land and resource rights of rural people.

Course design and facilitation

Dr Rick de Satgé and Ilse Wilson.

Course content advisory team:

Dr Aninka Claassens, Prof Ben Cousins, Constance Mogale, Nolundi Luwaya and Brendan Boyle.

Course presenters

Dr Michelle Hay, Reverend Mbhekiseni Mavuso, Dr Maanda Mulaudzi, Dr Aninka Claassens, Mazibuko Jara, Dr Rick de Satgé, Nomboniso Gasa, David Neves, Prof Ben Cousins, Nolundi Luwaya, Dr Gavin Capps,  Henk Smith, Dr Victor Munnik and Assoc Prof Amanda Esterhuysen.

Members of various ARD affiliates and related rural formations also presented local case studies and reflected on campaigns. Full details are available in the course report which will appear on this site soon.

Course organisation, logistics and documentation

Ursula Smith, Constance Mogale and Ivor Manuel.

Open access materials

The course guides and the presentations will soon be accessible from a public online repository where they will be available under a Creative Commons Licence.




This licence allows others to remix, tweak, and build upon this work non-commercially, as long as they credit the course designers and presenters and license their new creations under the identical terms.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s