1st Edition

'Sisters in the Struggle' Women of Indian Origin in South Africa's Liberation Struggle 1900–1994 (VOLUME 1: 1900–1940s)

By Kalpana Hiralal Copyright 2023
    286 Pages 166 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    ‘Sisters in the struggle’: Women of Indian Origin in South Africa’s Liberation Struggle 1900–1994 unveils an unchartered historical terrain, highlighting the contributions of Indian women towards non-racialism and equality and their experiences within diverse political parties; therefore, shifting the post-apartheid liberation stories which have been dominated by the journey of the ANC to other political organisations who collectively played a significant role in South Africa’s road to democracy.

    In this book, Hiralal presents a refreshing perspective of Indians, particularly women, as contributors and activists in the struggle. The book elucidates that the struggle against apartheid was a collective endeavour among the oppressed races and not a one-sided endeavour by the ANC. The book, thus, examines the participation of Indian women against apartheid and colonialism within gendered and political frameworks.


    PART 1:Early Resistance 1907–1920s: The Satyagraha Campaigns

    1. Kasturba Gandhi

    2. Jagrani Devi Bhawani Dayal

    3. Bai Fatima Sheikh Mehtab

    4. Valliamma Munuswami Mudliar

    5. Veerammal Naidoo

    PART 2: The 1930s and 1940s: The Passive Resistance Campaign 1946–1948

    6. Kistmah Latchmi Chetty

    7. Suryakala Patel

    8. Leila Pather

    9. Thayanayagie (Thailema) Pillay

    10. Amina Pahad

    11. Rajambal ‘Thanga’ Padiachy Kollapen

    12. Bhanumathee (Banu) Ghela

    13. Gadija Christopher

    14. Zainab Asvat

    15. Dr Kesaveloo Goonruthnum

    16. Halima Ahmed Nagdee Gool

    17. Zainunnisa “Cissie” Gool

    18. Muniammah Naidoo


    Kalpana Hiralal is Associate Professor of History at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Her PhD dissertation focused on Indian immigrants to Africa in the context of settlement, trade and identity formation. Her current research focus is on African and South Asian Diaspora and gender and politics in South Africa. She co-edited a book titled 1913, Satyagraha, Passive Resistance and its Legacy in 2015.