Christmas in South Africa: Black and Asian South Africans
Black South Africans compose about 75 percent of the nation’s population. Until recently a political system known as apartheid insured that most black South Africans lived separately from whites and remained relatively poor and uneducated. Most black South Africans are Christians, but a sizeable percentage hold to traditional, tribal religious beliefs. Before the dismantling of apartheid in the early 1990s, the Christmas celebrations of black South Africans tended to revolve around family gatherings, festive meals, and simple gifts. Now black South Africans find themselves increasingly drawn into Christmas commercialism.
South Africa also hosts a small minority of Asians, many of whom are Hindus and Muslims and therefore do not celebrate Christmas.