ESSAY ONE: Page 9 of 9
At around 5 o’clock each morning, when the fruit bats cease their ringing, and all creatures that scuttle about in the night making a din, become quiet on this coastline, a new intensive *screeching starts. It cuts the dawn’s lull to shreds. It is the voice of the lourie, the Gwala-Gwala Bird. Its name, I am told, originates from these shrieks, of horror. From the Nkandla forests to Durban’s coastline, from Khosi Bay to Port Edward, the din starts.
1. From M.W. Swanson (ed) The Views of Mahlati; Writings of A.W.G.
Champion a Black South African, Pietermaritzburg, 1982, p. 162
2. cf. A. Smith, Wealth of nations, (ed) A. Skinner, Harmondsworth, 1972, p. 515
3. For Marx’s critique of Malthus, cf. Grundrisse, Harmondsworth, 2974, pp. 564-
608, and Ricardo in idid, 559 ff. See also Theories of Surplus Value, Vol. 1, New
4. See K. Marx, Capital, Vol. 1, New York, 1974, pp. 628 ff. See also P.M. Sweezy,
The Theory of Capitalist Development, New York/London, 1956, p. 75-94
5. c. G.D.H. Cole, History of Socialist Thought, Vol. 1-2, London, 1964; also E.
Mandel, The Formation of the Economic Thought of Karl Marx, London, 1975
6. See on this process, C. Palloix, ‘From Fordism to Neo-Fordism”, in CSE (eds)
The Labour Process and Class Strategies, London, 1976; Also useful is M.
Aglietta’s, The Theory of Capitalist Regulation, The U.S. Experience, London,
7. On the ‘affluent worker’ see J. Golthorpe, et al, The Affluent Worker, London,
1969; although formulated at the turn of the century by Sombart and Michels,
this problematic finds a new resonance in the Frankfurt School, cf. m. Jay, The
Dialectical Imagination, London, 1974
8. cf. D Brody, “The Rise and Decline of Welfare Capitalism”, and “The Emergence
of Mass-production Unionism” in his Workers in Industrial America, New York/Oxford, 1980, pp. 48-119
9. J. Habermas, Theory and Practice, London, 1977, p. 119-20
10. Such a notion is at the centre of Adam Smith’s treatise and gains momentum and
crudification as the years roll on. From Ayn Rand to the economics of Milton
Friedman and W.W. Rostow
11. See, W.W. Rostow’s The Stages of Economic Growth, New York, 1972; also
S.N. Eisenstadt, Modernisation, Protest and Change, Englewood Cliffs, 1966; on
the Marxist side, cf. M. Aglietta, op cit, and B. Warren’s, Imperialism, the Pioneer
of Capitalism, London, 1978
12. A similar sentiment under a different context is E.P. Thompson’s essay, “The
Peculiarities of the English” in Poverty of Theory, London, 1978. See also
T. Lane, The Union Makes Us Strong, Essex, 1974
13. On capital accumulation in South Africa, cf. M. Legassic, Capital Accumulation
and Violence, in Economy and Society, vol. 3, no, 3 1974. Useful too is G,.
Bloch’s, “The Development of Manufacturing Industry in South Africa”, M.A.
Thesis, Cape Town University, 1980
14. C.S.S. (Central Statistical Services), 1980 Census Report 02.80.03
15. Department of Statistics, Manufacturing Census 1976, Report 10.21.33
18. J. Stanwix: ‘A Study of the Natal Regional Economy’ for the Natal Town and
Regional Planning commission, 1983
19. cf. J.M. Osborn, A Valiant Harvest: The History of the Sugar Industry’,
20. J.P.N. Bently, ‘Mill – A Century of Sugar Milling’, Condenser, December 1954,
21. J Stanwix, op cit.
22. M.Katzen, Industry in Greater Durban, Town and Regional Planning Report, Vol.
2, 1951, Chapter 1
23. H Houghton and J. Dagut, Source Material on the South African Economy,
Vol. 1, Capetown, 1964
24. cf. C.S. Richards, The Iron & Steel Industry of South Africa, Johannesburg, 1940
25. cf. A. Sitas ‘African Worker Responses on the East Rand with Changes in the
Metal Industry’, Ph.D. thesis, Witwatersrand University, Johannesburg, 1984,
26. G. Bloch, The Development of Manufacturing …, op cit, p. 79
27. G Bloch, op cit; cf. also A. Sitas, ‘African Worker Responses’, op cit,
28. Department of Statistics, Gross Geographic Product at Factor Incomes by
Magisterial District, 1975, Table 2
29. cf. m. Katzen, Industry in Grater Durban, part I, op cit, p. 72/3
30. ibid, 78 ff.
31. Periodization from ibid.
32. For definitions of ‘concentration’, ‘centralisation’ and ‘monopoly of capital’ cf. P.M.
Sweezy, Capitalist Development, op cit.
33. Community and Labour Relations Research Group, Sociology Department, Natal
University, Durban, (hitherto, C.L.R.R.G), Discussion 1 & 2, 1983/84.
34. cf. Katzen, op cit.
36. ibid, p. 20.
37. ibid, p. 25.
38. For such calculations and their history, cf. H.L. Watts, ‘The Poverty datum Line in
Six Selected Urban Areas’, C.A.S.S., Durban, 1967; see also H.L. Kuper, et al
‘Durban: A study of its Racial Ecology’, University of Natal, Durban, 1961
39. cf. H.G. Ringrose, Teade Unions in Natal, Cape Town 1951; also, Gitsham’s and
Trembath’s; A First Account of Labour Oganisation in South Africa, Durban 1926
40. On the implications of ‘jobbing production’, cf. E. Webster, The LABOUR Process
and Forms of Workplace Organisation in South African Foundries;, Pd.D. Thesis
Witwatersrand University 1983; cf. also A Sitas, ‘African Workers Responses; op
cit, Chapter 2
41. F Ginwala, “Class Consciousness and Control: Indian South Africans 1980-
1946’, Ph.D Thesis, Oxford University, 1974, provides a brief and useful outline.
42. Natal Mercury, 28/4/1859
43 Natal Mercury, 22/11/1860
44. cf. Y.S. Meer, et al, Documents of Indentured Labour, Durban, 1976. On the
strike cf. M. Tayal’s ‘The 1913 Natal Indian Strike’, History Workshop paper,
Witwatersrand University 1984
45. On this, cf. S. Bobat, and D. Bonnin, ‘Women and Natal’s Clothing Industry’,
1930s-1950s’, Natal University, Industrial Sociology Project, 1983. Also,
interview with H Bolton, 1984
46. See on this Bobat and Bonnin op cit.
47. Katzen, op cit, p. 34
48. Report on the Department of labour, U.G. 11/1936, p. 78
49 Katzen, op cit, p. 35
50. ibid, p. 38
53. On migrancy and Durban, cf. J.R. Burrows, “Natal’s Labour Resources and
Industry in Greater Durban”, M.A. Thesis Natal University, Durban, 1959
54. cf. P. Maylam, ‘Twentieth Century Durban: Thoughts on its Regional Specificity,
and Some Reflections on a Recent Workshop’, History Workshop paper,
Witwatersrand University, 1984. But also the Durban History Workshop paper by
P Maylam: “Shackled by the Contradictions: The municipal response to African
urbanization in Durban, c. 1920-2950”
55. cf. L. Torr, ‘The Durban City Council and Urban Land Use 1923-1933 in the
Founding of Lamont’, in History Workshop, Durban, 1984; J Mackenzie, African
Women and the Urbanization Process in Durban, c. 1920-1949, in ibid
56. cf. M.W. Swanson, ‘The Rise of Clermont’; P. Edwards, ‘Living on the ‘smell of an
oilrag’: African Life in Cato Manor Farm in the late 1940s’; D.W.M. Edley,
‘Africans in Durban During the Great Depression 1929-1933’, History Workshop,
op cit; also G. Maasdorp, & A.S.B. Humphreys (eds) From Shantytown to
Township, Cape Town, 1975
57. P.L. Wickins, The I.C.U. of Africa, Cape Town, 1974; see also, P, Le Hause’s
‘Ematsheni’, History Workshop, op cit
58. D hemson, ‘Class Consciousness and Migrant Workers: Dock Workers of
Durban’, Ph.D. Warwich University, 1979
59. cf. Luckhardt & Wall, Organise or Starve, London, 1980, Chapter 2; on
‘parlallelism’ cf. Ringrose, Trade Union in Natal, op cit
60. cf. Hemson op cit; also, P. Tichman, ‘Worker Resistance in Durban in the 1940s
and 1950s’ History workshop, op cit
61. cf. Lockhardt & Wall, op cit, Hemson and Tichman, op cit; Also Khumalo,
62. E. Webster, ‘The Indian vs. Zulu riots in Natal’ in P. Bonner 9ed), African Studies
Institute Seminar Papers, Johannesburg, 1977
63. cf. Tichman, op cit
64. Natal Regional Survey: The African factory Worker, Cape Town, 1950, p. 8
65. On the relocation see Maasdorp & Humphreys, op cit, on the campaign of the
1950s/60s, cf. Luckhardt & Wall, op cit; also Interviews, with Khanyile and
66. See the I.I.E.’s Durban Strikes, Durban, 1974
67. In Y.S. Meer et al (ed) Documents, op cit
68. Anglo American Corporation, for example, had substantial interest, for example
in AECI, Scaw Metals, and Union Acceptances Limited
69. S.A Reserve Bank: A statistical presentation of South Africa’s National Accounts
1945-1970, June 1971, Table 15
70. G Bloch, op cit, p. 144
71. S.A. Reserve bank, Quartlerly Bulletin, June 1973, p.77
72. M. Savage, ‘The Ownership and Control of large South African Companies’ in
South African Labour Bulletin 4. (6), 1978
73. South African Statistics, 1982, Table 7.6 and 12.60
74. This process of urbanization was facilitated in the Durban area by its proximity to
KwaZulu and resulted in the emergence of enormous squatter settlements on the
periphery of the metropolitan areas
75. Achieved primarily through the call-in card system
76. They were the National Union Textile Workers, (NUTW), the Metal and Allied
Workers’ Union, (MAWU), the Chemical Workers’ Industrial union, (CWIU), the
Transport and General Workers’ Union, (TWWU) which functioned as a general
union throughout most of the 1970s. A furniture union became defunct early on
in the decade
77. A direct comparison of strategy is blurred by the different historical conditions
78. Such as the stoppage following the death of trade unionist Neil Aggett of the
Food and Canning Workers’ Union
79. cf. the recognition agreement between the Birtish owned Smith and Nephew and
80. Worker Resistance in Natal, Project: Interviews, of Shopstewards in Durban;
forthcoming in S Meer’s article in SALB, Vol, 13, Nos 1 & 2, 1988
81. In S. Meer, idid
82. Namely the Paper, Wood and Allied Worker’s Union, the Glass and Allied
Workers’ Union, and sections of the Engineering and Allied Workers’ Union. On
this, cf. P. Bonner’s, “Independent Trade Unions since Wiehahn”, in S.A.L.B. Vol.
8, No. 4, 1983
83. eg. Alusaf workers earning a R1.53 minimum, Zululand Observer 15 July, 1983
84. cf. FOSATU Report, 1982, 1983, op cit. The FOSATU unions with varying
consistency put forward the following demands:
(a) no retrenchment without notice to the union,
(b) no retrenchment without full information,
(c) no retrenchment without full and negotiation on: Overtime Work, Short
Time, Transfers and Training, Voluntary Retirement, Casual Employment,
Lay-off, Protection of Contract Workers,
(d) fair retrenchment procedures including first-in-last-out severance pay and,
(e) fair practice after retrenchment. The General Workers Union also put
forward guidelines over retrenchments similar in vein to the above.
85. cf. FOSATU Report, 1983
86. cf. FOSATU Worker News, 1983 and 1984, it provides ample examples of this
87. cf. FOSATU Report, 1982, op cit, Interview with A. Temba, 1984
88. CLRRG Bus Boycott Project, 1983
89. J Keenan, “The Nature of Economic Growth in South Africa”, ASSA Seminar
90. cf. E. Webster, Cast in a Racial Mould, op cit
91. Webster, ibid, pp. 85/278
92. ibid, p. 253
93. Sitas, Formations and Struggles amongst Migrant Workers on the East Rand,
Labour, Capital and Society, Vol. 18, No. 2, 1985, J. Baskin, The Growth of a
New Worker Organ, SALB, Vol. 7, No. 8, 1982, M. Swilling, The Busses smell of
Blood: The East London Boycott, SALB, Vol. 9, 1984
94. Saul and Gelb, The Crisis in South Africa, p. 113/120.