Anti-Apartheid badge

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Campaigning involves a range of methods including meetings and demonstrations, direct action, lobbying and the use of slogans and symbols. These objects are all connected with campaigns for change that are related to racial inequality and injustice. They have been arranged in complementary pairs.

An appeal to brotherhood; AD 1787


The transatlantic slave trade exploited racial stereotyping to justify the oppression, degradation and murder of African people. Medals such as this, which stressed the common humanity of enslaved peoples, were worn by supporters of the campaign to abolish the trade.

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Isolate oppression; AD 1981


This badge was produced to oppose the 1981 South African rugby union tour of New Zealand. In an attempt to isolate apartheid, countries were encouraged to cancel sporting events with South African teams. The decision that the tour should go ahead led to violent protests which prevented two of the matches from taking place.

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Sugar boycott; AD 1800-30


Campaigners for the abolition of transatlantic slavery urged a boycott of sugar and other goods produced on plantations that exploited enslaved workers.

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South Africa boycott; AD 1987


The Anti-Apartheid Movement recognised the potential impact of economic pressure on the government of South Africa. It encouraged the public to boycott South African products and companies and banks with links to South Africa.

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‘By any means necessary’; AD 1967


Although the Black Panther Party was founded after the death of Malcolm X, his words sum up its declared willingness to use violence to oppose white racism in the USA. This badge was produced during the party’s most militant period, when it aimed to arm black citizens to protect black communities from police oppression. Later the party focused on community social programmes.

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Non-violence; AD 1930s


This plate is decorated with an image of Mahatma Gandhi working his spinning wheel. Gandhi had worked as a lawyer in South Africa, and was appalled by apartheid and the treatment of Indian immigrants there. When he returned to India he led the campaign for Indian independence through a programme of peaceful non-cooperation with the British. Gandhi’s approach influenced Martin Luther King Jnr who advocated the use of non-violent methods in the US Civil Rights Movement.

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Anti-Apartheid badge