His death sparked outrage and a renewed sense of purpose.

A Word From Stephen Biko – (Dec. 18, 1946-September 12, 1977) Past Daily Reference Room

His death sparked outrage and a renewed sense of purpose.

His death sparked outrage and a renewed sense of purpose.

Click on the link here for Audio Player – An interview with Stephen Biko – August 1977 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection

Among many other things on this day, September 12th in 1977 was also the day it was disclosed that Anti-Apartheid activist Stephen Biko was murdered while in custody by Police in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Biko was one of the leading lights in the Anti-Apartheid movement. Organizing in peaceful protest, Biko had been very involved in the movement  since the early 1960s. On a Pop-Culture note – it was Biko who coined the term “Black Is Beautiful“, which went on to become one of the iconic phrases in Black Consciousness raising in the 1970s.

This interview, done within a day of his arrest by police, was conducted under less than ideal circumstances. Music plays in the background as a way of preventing eavesdropping by police bugging devices. He explains the history of the Anti-Apartheid Movement and his role in attempting to bring together groups, both black and white, to change the oppressive polices of the Pretoria government.

And this would be the last interview the world would hear. He was arrest in late August of 1977 and by September 12th he was dead.

And the struggle continued for many long  years after.

In case you always heard about Stephen Biko, or read his books, here is an opportunity to hear the voice of the man himself.

And another reason not to forget that struggles exist throughout the world and that there are many Stephen Bikos among us.


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