Special Collections has an extensive collection of South and Southern African posters and political ephemera. The collection of political ephemera consists mainly of 1 or 2-page broadsheets that were distributed - often illegally - by political groupings in the 1980s and 1990s. There is also material produced during earlier periods. The collection of political ephemera has been organised under headings and these may be searched in a database. Much of the political ephemera has been digitised and will be available online in due course.
The poster collection includes many South and Southern African political posters, as well as posters of a non-political nature. The collection of posters includes about 1700 items, mainly from the period of struggle against apartheid, but also features a selection of Mozambican posters from the post-independence period. Political ephemera of which posters may be said to be a subset, are an excellent resource for researching social and political movements and have an immediacy that is extremely evocative.
The UCT Historical Pamphlets and Photographs Collection
The collection of materials on the history of the University of Cape Town includes many pamphlets as well as photographs and other materials. Search for specific items or for materials on specific aspects of the university’s history.
In the 1950s and 1960s, the Libraries’ original policy towards pamphlets was to bind them into volumes for preservation purposes. Individual titles were then indexed on a typed page that was bound in at the beginning of each volume. There are over 160 such bound volumes in Special Collections, containing somewhere between 1 500 and 2 000 pamphlets published in the nineteenth and the first half of the twentieth centuries, and almost all dealing with South African subject matter. Researchers are encouraged to use these materials; please speak to any Special Collections staff member for more details.
The collection of political posters includes about 700 items, mainly from the period of struggle against apartheid, but also features a selection of Mozambican posters from the post-independence period.
Search posters on Primo.
Researchers may email Busi Khangala to arrange the use of uncatalogued posters.