n Educare - The Swiss missionaries' educational endeavour as a means for social transformation in South Africa (1873-1975)




Social transformation is as old as humanity. It is the product of human thought and action. People have always been striving to bring about change aimed at improving their living conditions. Each generation has surpassed its predecessor in terms of the socioeconomic and political changes it brought to bear on society. Before the advent of colonialism and western education, home (informal) education was an important catalyst for social development among African communities. The arrival of missionaries of different denominations led to the introduction of formal education among the indigenous populace as literacy was viewed as a means for evangelisation. In South Africa both mission education and colonial education played a very significant role in the acculturation, detribalisation and modernisation of the indigenous populations to the level where they are today. Social transformation is a lifelong process.


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