Public education can be one of the most powerful tools at the disposal of a government wanting to maintain power, as it is the realm in which children are taught the social values and norms that will sustain the culture when they become adults. In South Africa, education was kept separate, unequal, and decidedly undemocratic, and as Hlatshwayo explains, it was used specifically to preserve and perpetuate inequality. In a work designed for historians and education professionals alike, he examines the tumultuous and highly politicized history of South African education and evaluates the prospects for its hopefully nonracialized future. Hlatshwayo begins with a look at the socioeconomic and political structure (dating back as far as 1658) that allowed for South Africa's use of education as a tool of hegemony and follows this with a critical analysis of the educational system--its goals, objectives, organizational structure, and resistance thereto. Finally, drawing from the educational policy statements of the United Democratic Front (UDF) and the African National Congress (ANC), he proposes a democratic educational system for South Africa--something that, as he makes clear in this provocative and challenging work, has been an anathema for centuries to a government that had as its primary goal the subjugation of the majority of its citizens. Using an array of sociological and economic models, Hlatshwayo reveals the ways in which a society's educational system and its struggle toward freedom are inextricable.