Sunday January 22, 2006, The ObserverFor a growing number of Afrikaners, the new South Africa is an alien world of squatters' camps and begging bowls. Photojournalist Simon Wood meets the people who lost most when Mandela won.
It is a Thursday afternoon at a busy intersection in Johannesburg's Bryanston district. The traffic robot turns green and the white Mercs and BMWs, four-wheel-drives and the occasional pick-up truck, with a black family's whole world piled on to the tailgate, pull away from the lights. Not far off are the gleaming towers of Sandton, a symbol of South African prosperity and an area where great wealth can be glimpsed, albeit behind electric fences and razor wire. The majority of up-market cars are still driven by middle- and upper-income whites, but many belong to the growing class of wealthy blacks. In a country where carjacking and other violent crimes are an everyday fact of life, all have their windows closed and doors firmly locked. Alongside the cars weave the inevitable gaggle of roadside Africans selling a variety of useful and useless items, many of them dressed in no more than rags. This is the new South Africa that many now expect to find.( Read more...Collapse )