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Word Count: 485
Sirens blared voices screamed and shouted wood cracked and windows shattered children bawled dogs barked and footsteps pounded7 This scene is from the autobiography Kaffir Boy written by Mark Mathabane That is one of the scenes he had to live through every morning in apartheid South Africa Apartheid is a policy of segregation and economic discrimination against non-whites Apartheid system affected every black person living in South Africa during that time It forced blacks to become slaves in their own country The system forced blacks to live in unsanitary environments work-degrading jobs and carry passes and receive limited education Blacks and whites were living in different sections during apartheidWhile whites lived comfortable lives in their extravagant mansions and driving their fancy cars blacks had to live in a disease infested neighborhood with no electricity or in door plumbing Approximately one thousand people lived in shacks that were squeezed together in a one-mile zone The alleys were filled with dirt rats human wasted and diseases Blacks lived in houses made of old whitewash a leaking ceiling of rusted Inx propped up by a thin wall of crumbling adobe bricks two tiny windows made of cardboard and pieces of glass a creaky termite-eaten door low for a person of average height to pass throughand a floor made of patches of cement earth31 Living in such a degrading environment kills self-esteem lowers work ethic and leaves no hope for the future Degrading low paying jobs were the only jobs available for black men Women worked as servants for whites Men had to work in mines clean up toilets or work as police officers abusing their own people Shit-men-belligerent immigrant workers who because of what they did were looked upon by many black people-went about the communal lavatories picking up buckets of excrement83 Working as servants for whites was one of the better jobs for black women Blacks could not walk around freely in their own country without carrying
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