/seuh wee"toh, -way"-/, n.
a group of townships in NE South Africa, SW of and administered by Johannesburg: constructed in the 1950s and early 1960s to provide housing and services for black Africans. 550,000; 26 sq. mi. (67 sq. km).

* * *

Township (pop., 1991 596,632), northeastern Republic of South Africa.

It adjoins Johannesburg on the southwest, and its name is an acronym derived from South-Western Townships. It was originally set aside by the South African white government for residence by blacks. The townships constituting Soweto grew out of shantytowns that arose with the arrival of black labourers from rural areas, especially between the World Wars. There is little industrial development; most of Soweto's residents commute to Johannesburg for employment. It is the country's largest black urban complex, and its residents were active in the protests that helped bring an end to apartheid by 1991.

* * *

      urban complex in Gauteng province, South Africa. Originally set aside by the South African white government for residence by blacks, it adjoins the city of Johannesburg on the southwest; its name is an acronym derived from South-Western Townships. It is the country's largest black urban complex.

      The townships constituting Soweto grew out of shantytowns and slums that arose with the arrival of black labourers from rural areas, in particular in the period between World Wars I and II. Growth was haphazard, and the emerging township lacked municipal services and government. Slum clearance and permanent-housing programs began there in 1948, at which time local as well as national authority was established.

      The population, representing a number of black ethnic groups, typically has been larger than the official enumeration (which had exceeded one million by the mid-1990s). Soweto residents were in the forefront of demands for the development of black equality during the country's apartheid era. In 1976 Soweto was the site of a massive uprising known as the Soweto Rebellion, which began as a protest against the government's insistence that the Afrikaans language be used as the medium of instruction in Soweto's high schools. Years of violence and repression followed.

      A Community Council of black residents was first elected in 1978 to administer municipal affairs. Considered a powerless institution by most residents of Soweto, the council was nominally responsible for developing transport, roads, water supply, sewerage, electricity, and housing. After apartheid was dismantled in the mid-1990s, these municipal services came under the jurisdiction of the Greater Johannesburg Metropolitan Council. In 2000 the Greater Johannesburg administrative structure was decentralized into 11 regions, with the Soweto township being divided between two of these. Most services became the responsibility of each region, with some still provided by various regional, provincial, or national authorities.

      There is little industrial development in Soweto, and most residents commute to other parts of Greater Johannesburg for employment. However, tourism has become a growing source of income.

* * *

Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Soweto — is an urban area in the City of Johannesburg, in Gauteng, South Africa. Its name is an English syllabic abbreviation, short for South Western Townships .HistoryThe history of African townships south west of Johannesburg that would later form… …   Wikipedia

  • Soweto — Soweto …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Soweto — es un área urbana próxima a Johannesburgo, en la provincia Gauteng (Sudáfrica). Durante los tiempos del apartheid, Soweto fue construida con el fin de alojar a los africanos negros que hasta entonces vivían en áreas designadas por el gobierno… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Soweto —   [englisch sə weɪtəʊ; Abkürzung für englisch South Western Township »südwestlich Township«], Wohnstadt für Schwarze, südwestlicher Stadtteil von Johannesburg, Republik Südafrika; die Einwohnerzahl kann wegen des nicht genehmigten Zuzugs… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Soweto — (acronyme de South West Township, ville du Sud Ouest ) v. d Afrique du Sud, dans la banlieue de Johannesburg; 2 millions d hab. env. Le 16 juin 1976, une manifestation de lycéens donna lieu à un massacre par la police …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Soweto — black African community outside Johannesburg, South Africa, formed from first letters of South Western Townships …   Etymology dictionary

  • Soweto — 26° 14′ 54″ S 27° 52′ 26″ E / 26.2482267, 27.8740203 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Soweto — Este artículo o sección necesita referencias que aparezcan en una publicación acreditada, como revistas especializadas, monografías, prensa diaria o páginas de Internet fidedignas. Puedes añadirlas así o avisar …   Wikipedia Español

  • Soweto — Original name in latin Soweto Name in other language Mpanzaville, Souehto, Soueto, Sovetas, Soveto, Soweto, souSowetoeto, soweto, suo wei tuo, swwtw, Соуэто State code ZA Continent/City Africa/Johannesburg longitude 26.26781 latitude 27.85849… …   Cities with a population over 1000 database

  • Soweto — So|wet|o a large ↑township that was established near Johannesburg in South Africa for black people to live in, because they were not allowed to live in Johannesburg under the old system of ↑apartheid, although they were allowed to work there. In… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.