Q:

What did Nelson Mandela fight for?

A:

Quick Answer

Nelson Mandela fought to end apartheid, which divided people in South Africans based on race. After his release from prison, he sought reconciliation. He is credited with helping South Africa move past its unjust history.

Know More
What did Nelson Mandela fight for?
Credit: Boston Globe via Getty Images Boston Globe Getty Images

Full Answer

South Africa became a popular destination for Europeans due to its climate, natural resources and culture, but tensions between whites and blacks were always high. Through the years, institutional oppression formed a system known as apartheid, under which blacks and whites had vastly different rights and privileges. The fight against apartheid accelerated in the middle of the 20th century, and Nelson Mandela was a leader of the anti-apartheid movement. His actions landed him in prison, where he stayed for 27 years.

While Mandela was imprisoned, the anti-apartheid movement gained steam and eventually forced the racist laws to change. After his release, Mandela was elected president of South Africa. Before his imprisonment, Mandela's organization employed violence in the fight against apartheid, and many white South Africans thought he would seek some form of retribution. Instead, Mandela focused on reconciliation and on building ties between the white and black South African communities. His forgiveness has made him an often-cited example of moving forward instead of focusing on the past.


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    Who was Nelson Mandela, and what did he do?

    A:

    Nelson Mandela (1918-2013) was a president of South Africa and a Nobel Peace Prize recipient. In South Africa, he is often called "Madiba," which was the name of the clan he was born into.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a short biography of Nelson Mandela?

    A:

    Nelson Mandela began his career as a lawyer before becoming an anti-apartheid revolutionary and serving as president of South Africa. For his social justice, human rights and anti-apartheid work, Mandela was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Who was Nelson Mandela's first wife?

    A:

    Nelson Mandela's first wife was Evelyn Ntoko Mase. Married in 1944, the couple had two sons: Madiba “Thembi” Thembekile and Makgatho Mandela. They also had two daughters, both named Makaziwe "Maki" Mandela. Their first daughter died at nine months of age, and their second daughter was named in her honor.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Why was Nelson Mandela released from prison?

    A:

    Nelson Mandela was released from prison because of internal and external political pressures that encouraged the South African government to end apartheid. In an effort to gain international favor and appease opposing forces within the country, President F.W. de Klerk released all prisoners of the African National Congress, including Mandela.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore