South Africa: Spring 2023

South Africa

Overcoming injustice and pursuing reconciliation

The primary goal of this semester of intercultural study is to learn the history of South Africa, with a particular focus on the legacy of colonialism and apartheid. Students will explore the way in which race was (is) viewed, and the social construction created around it. They will learn about the struggle against apartheid and how apartheid was overcome, especially understanding the church’s role in the struggle.

Students will also explore the pursuit of peace, justice, and reconciliation as well as the nature of peace and the way views of peace have changed in South Africa.

Through learning about South African dynamics and struggles, students will receive another lens through which the current dynamics in the U.S./North America will become more apparent (e.g., racial realities, violence, the meaning of justice, the need for peace with justice, what reconciliation might mean in the North American context, etc.).


  • A diversity of cultures
  • Warm hospitality
  • South Africa’s urban and natural beauty


Estimated Cost:  $2,400 travel fee +Tuition, Room & Board (subject to change)
Seminar Leaders: Andrew Suderman, Bible, Religion & Theology, and Karen Suderman
Locations: Johannesburg, Soweto, Pretoria, Cape Town, Pietermaritzburg, Nelspruit


CCSSC 201 Cross-Cultural Social Science: South Africa 3 SH
Students will learn about South Africa’s diverse history through stories of indigenous South Africans, tribal conflicts, and the introduction of European peoples and identities. They will also explore the dynamics that arose from these stories and their interconnections, culminating in the racial segregation policy of apartheid and the way that policy shaped the view of others (or “the other”).

CCPXD 302/CCCHST 302 Study in Peace, Justice and Reconciliation 3 SH
Students will explore South African dynamics, struggles, and context, developing a lens to look at dynamics in North America (racial realities, violence, justice, the need for peace with justice, reconciliation in the NA context, etc.). Explore ways of confronting negative social realities that work for peace – shalom (peace with justice).

CCLNG 135 isiZulu  3SH
Students will learn greetings and basic conversational skills, and be introduced to the phonemes and grammatical structure of the isiZulu language.

CCREL 316 Church, Identity and Purpose in SA (CIW) 3 SH
Apartheid, as a social engineering project, was both supported and challenged by different expressions of the Church. The Church itself was a site of struggle. Learn about the ways in which apartheid and its system of racial segregation was both supported by particular arms of the church and the way others challenged it.

CCHIS 317 South African History and Culture 3 SH
Our study of the history of South Africa, will focus on the legacy of colonialism and apartheid. We will examine the struggle against apartheid and how apartheid was overcome, with a particular focus on the church’s role in the struggle.

South Africa 2019 blog and photos


  • Routine – MMR, DPT series with last booster within 10 years, IPV or OPV, Hep B, Hepatitis A, Influenza and Covid-19 as required for EMU enrollment.
  • Anti-malarial prophylaxis - Request a prescription for Atovaquone-proguanil, doxycycline, mefloquine, or tafenoquine. Chloroquine is not recommended.
  • In an effort to maximize the safety of our hosts and our students, EMU Intercultural Programs requires all employees and students who plan to travel for intercultural immersion, both domestic and international, to have completed their vaccination regimen for COVID-19 more than 14 days prior to travel. This requirement is one of the standard immunizations required for enrollment, effective Mar. 1, 2021. 

Immunizations and prescriptions may be obtained at EMU Health Services by appointment.
Immunizations may also be obtained from your local health department or primary care provider.  

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