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How Columbia Students Helped Bring Apartheid to the Attention of Americans

Friday, December 06, 2013

"Columbia pays the bills. Apartheid kills." That was the chant at Columbia University in 1985 as students protested against the university's financial involvement with the South African government.

The divestment movement in the 1970s and 1980s played a major role in bringing apartheid to the attention of the American public.

At the time, Nelson Mandela was in prison in South Africa on political charges. In this interview, WNYC's Arun Venugopal talks about the movement the late Mandela inspired abroad.

"Columbia University in particular had tens of millions of dollars invested in these companies in South Africa and students felt that this was immoral, you know, and that it aided in the power and perpetuation of the apartheid regime," he said.

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