n AFFRIKA Journal of Politics, Economics and Society - A veiled hegemonic interest and the multiple faces of South Africa’s foreign policy

Volume 9 Number 1
  • ISSN : 1998-4936
  • E-ISSN: 2075-6534



This paper addresses the question of what informs the character and orientation of South Africa‘s foreign policy particularly in the post-apartheid era. By undertaking this enquiry, the study attempts to show the linkage between the palpable sources of South Africa‘s foreign policy and its presumed hegemonic interest in Africa. These multiple contexts serve a facilitating or constraining role in masking South Africa‘s foreign policy interest in Africa. The author argues that the product of South Africa‘s foreign policy is not the exclusivity of a specific institution but rather a combination of overlapping interests among several domestic actors. The multiple international agendas that South Africa pursues necessitate a nuanced blend of actors that impact directly on its middle power status and the Afrocentric orientation of its foreign policy which promotes a hegemonic identity. In effect, Pretoria‘s hegemonic reference in Africa is concealed beneath the veil of complex interplays and inter-linkages among several key foreign policy actors.

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