A School of Struggle

Durban's Medical School and the Education of Black Doctors in South Africa

By Vanessa Noble

In South Africa, Durban's medical school has made an indelible mark on the country's history and society. As the first medical school in South Africa to offer a full biomedical education to black students, it laid the foundation of the black medical profession. Also, during a time of repression and political unrest, the school offered students an education in politics and activism. Its alumni - among them Steve Biko, Jerry Coovadia, Nkosana Dlamini Zuma, Malegapuru Makgoba, Zweli Mkhize, and Mamphela Ramphele - went from here to change the medical landscape, make history, and set the tone of public life. Based on oral histories and a sensitive interrogation of archival sources, this book presents a detailed history of the medical school from the 1950s to post-apartheid. It offers insightful portraits of the school's pioneers, poignantly detailing the students' struggles to overcome prejudice, structural hardships, and discrimination in a quest to improve their lives, an institution, and society. In the book, the Durban medical school becomes a prism through which to clearly view recent South African history of education, medicine, resistance, and politics.


398 pages

Publication Date: 11/8/2013
Format: Paper
ISBN: 9781869142520