South Africa has endured enormous upheaval throughout its history. Social, political and economic problems have characterised several decades of internal strife, institutionalised racism, poverty and disease.
Following the end of apartheid and the formation of the Republic of South Africa, Nelson Mandela and his government began the slow process of healing and redressing decades of oppression and injustice.
Sadly though, one of the tragic hallmarks of the new South Africa is a country ravaged with an escalating HIV/Aids epidemic, high crime rates and unemployment.
While 77.5% of South Africans identify as Christian, there is a strong move towards a more pluralist worldview, offering a strident challenge to Christianity’s powerful voice.
- Region: Africa
- Capital: Pretoria (administrative), Cape Town (legislative), Bloemfontein (judicial)
- Population: 55.3 million
- Area: 1,219,090 km2
- Religions: Independent Christian 37.6%, Protestant 20.9%, Roman Catholic 17%, ethnic religions 12.6%
- Languages: 11 official languages: Zulu, Xhosa, Afrikaans, English, Pedi, Tswana, Sotho, Tsonga, Swazi, Venda and Ndebele.