By Owen Crankshaw

Because the merely entire empirical research of the altering racial and occupational constitution of the city crew in South Africa less than apartheid, this research will make a useful contribution to our knowing of the advanced inter-relations of previous and current racial inequality and financial improvement in South Africa.

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Extra resources for Race Class and Changing Division of Labour under Apartheid

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Without exception, for the period from 1979 to 1989, African semi-professionals, routine whitecollar workers and artisans earned the least. Conversely, white wages within these occupational categories were always the highest. 20 Another important feature of the pattern of black advancement in these semi-professional, routine white-collar and artisanal occupations is that it has been accompanied by an exodus of whites. This is evident in the employment patterns of routine white-collar workers and artisans.

In the mining and secondary industries, the expansion of capitalist production was accompanied by a radical restructuring of the occupational division of labour. Through mechanisation and the fragmentation of the skilled trades, employers were able to increase their output by employing 35 CAPITALIST INTERESTS AND LABOUR POLICY more and more African workers on semi-skilled and machine operative tasks while advancing white workers into top semi-skilled jobs and the skilled trades. Thus, the expansion of African employment in the mining and secondary sectors was achieved through the substantial increase in the size of the largely African semi-skilled and machine operative class.

6 In contrast to Wolpe’s estimates, Davies argued that only 3 per cent of economically active Africans were employed in ‘new petty bourgeois’ occupations in 1974. In terms of absolute employment figures, Davies’ findings are somewhat lower than my own, at 195,366 in 1974 compared to my result of 238,285 for 1975. 7 There are two reasons for these divergent results and their associated interpretations. The first of these is concerned with the definitions of the ‘new middle class’ or ‘new petty bourgeoisie’ and the problem of applying such definitions to the occupational categories reported by the Population Census.

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