Born a Crime

by

Trevor Noah

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Also known as Bantustans, homelands were isolated rural areas to which the apartheid government deported urban South African blacks en masse. People from each ethnic group were sent to the same homelands so that different groups would remain divided instead of uniting against the government. The lands inevitably grew crowded and depleted, leading their populations to fall into extreme poverty. In some cases, these homelands were even considered sovereign states—although only so that the apartheid government could more easily revoke blacks’ South African citizenship and fail to provide them any social support.

Homelands Quotes in Born a Crime

The Born a Crime quotes below are all either spoken by Homelands or refer to Homelands. For each quote, you can also see the other terms and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Racism, Apartheid, and the Cycle of Poverty Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Random House edition of Born a Crime published in 2016.
Chapter 5 Quotes

So many black families spend all of their time trying to fix the problems of the past. That is the curse of being black and poor, and it is a curse that follows you from generation to generation. My mother calls it “the black tax.” Because the generations who came before you have been pillaged, rather than being free to use your skills and education to move forward, you lose everything just trying to bring everyone behind you back up to zero. Working for the family in Soweto, my mom had no more freedom than she'd had in Transkei, so she ran away. She ran all the way down to the train station and jumped on a train and disappeared into the city, determined to sleep in public restrooms and rely on the kindness of prostitutes until she could make her own way in the world.

Page Number: 66
Explanation and Analysis:
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Born a Crime PDF

Homelands Term Timeline in Born a Crime

The timeline below shows where the term Homelands appears in Born a Crime. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 5
Racism, Apartheid, and the Cycle of Poverty Theme Icon
Identity, Belonging, and Community Theme Icon
...at the age of nine, but he sends her to live in Transkei, the Xhosa “homeland,” with his sister. (full context)
Racism, Apartheid, and the Cycle of Poverty Theme Icon
Love and Personal Growth Theme Icon
Resilience Through Religion, Education, and Humor Theme Icon
...ends up living in a hut with 14 other unwanted children in the overcrowded, infertile “homeland.” She works the fields in the early morning and fights the other children—or sometimes the... (full context)
Chapter 18
Racism, Apartheid, and the Cycle of Poverty Theme Icon
Identity, Belonging, and Community Theme Icon
Love and Personal Growth Theme Icon
...Andrew, when Trevor is nine years old. They visit Abel’s family in the tropical Tsonga homeland, and Trevor finds out that “Tsonga culture […] is extremely patriarchal.” Men do little besides... (full context)