Day 2: Apartheid Museum and Seminal Readings

Today’s Blog Writer: McKenzie Roller

MORNING

 Our day started with breakfast and a trip to the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg which is about 30 minutes away from campus. Visiting the Apartheid Museum taught us about an incredibly influential part of South Africa’s past in an interactive and eye-opening way. As we entered we were assigned races, either white or non-white, altering how we entered the museum and which halls displaying Apartheid identity documentation we walked through.

Then we entered a walkway that displayed the journey of people from South Africa throughout the period and we entered the indoor, more extensive portion of the museum. There was a temporary exhibition dedicated to Nelson Mandela, describing his life as an activist and his incredible perseverance and ability to forgive.

The other section was the permanent exhibition that describes the rise of Apartheid, life during that period, how the system eventually fell apart, and how life today still experiences the effects of Apartheid. The museum was a very powerful experience for everyone and a video is included demonstrating some of our reactions.

AFTERNOON


When we returned to campus we had free time. Some of us sat on the quad listening to music and having a great time in the amazing weather of the South African summer. Others joined the ALA students in playing sports such as basketball and soccer. Around 4:30 a huge thunderstorm rolled in and we had to go inside, cutting sports and time on the quad short, but we had quality bonding time that extended into dinner time where we got to meet some amazing new people.

Now (7:30pm) we are currently reading our Seminal Readings for tomorrow. Seminal Readings are completed by the entire school, although the reading itself is different depending on the grade, and the reading period is followed by discussions the next time the group meets. We will spend tomorrow morning discussing what we read tonight with our Chommie and their advisory.

The people at ALA have been so welcoming and everyone is having a great time trying new things and creating amazing memories. We learned so much today and can’t wait for the rest of the trip.

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