pass law, noun phrase

Forms:
Also with initial capitals.
historical
Usually in the plural : A body of laws controlling the movement and residence rights of black people, differing from one period to the next, but particularly during the apartheid era implemented by endorsements in identity documents (the carrying of which was compulsory), and enforced by the imposition of fines and prison-sentences. Also attributive, and combination pass law system, these laws collectively, and the way in which they were implemented; see also pass system (pass sense 4).
1828 [see Philip quot. at pass sense 1].
1897 E. Prov. Herald 8 Feb.In the defence of a native charged with being without a pass, the defence was made that the Pass Law was not legal.
1897 A. Milner in C. Headlam Milner Papers (1931) I. 194Exempt Cape Boys from the degrading provisions of the Pass Law.
1899 S. Erasmus Prinsloo 115When the new Pass Law was made, the boys were afraid to leave without their passes, for if caught they would be flogged for having none.
1908 J.M. Orpen Reminisc. (1964) 268The President spoke of a pass law regarding movements of natives and cattle entering the Free State.
1909 State Vol.2 No.7, 14The native..is also subjected to the Pass Law in the Transvaal, which enables his employer to control him with greater ease and to enforce performance of his contract to work.
1921 Outward Bound May 46I would not report them, that was not my way, let the pass-law say what it pleased. I don’t hold with pass-law slavery.
1927 Workers’ Herald 18 Mar. 1Pass Laws Must Go. Every I.C.U. Member must pay his or her 5/- National Levy to fight these Dog Licenses.
1943 I. Frack S. Afr. Doctor 68The irritating pass laws are another form of petty persecution.
1948 O. Walker Kaffirs Are Lively 171A pass then was a scrap of paper stating that the owner of it had been freely released by his baas. From such a humble beginning has been raised the formidable Pass Law system.
1950 H. Gibbs Twilight in S. Afr. 72The majority of their crimes involve theft, robbery with violence, assault, offences against women, drunkenness. And towering above all, failure to comply with the pass laws.
1958 A. Sampson Treason Cage 52The chief instrument by which Africans were controlled and disciplined — the pass laws, which require every black man to carry a document, without which he is arrested and removed from the city.
1968 Cole & Flaherty House of Bondage 40A policeman may at any time call upon any African who is sixteen or older to produce his reference book. If the African fails to produce it, or if his papers are not in order, he is committing a criminal offence and is liable to a fine or imprisonment. The last is the nub of the infamous ‘pass laws,’ a complex mesh of rules and regulations that restrict the freedom of movement of Africans. Compared to some of the other oppressive statutes of apartheid, the pass laws on paper seem modest enough. But in practice they are the keynote on which enforcement of the entire apartheid system is based.
1968 Cole & Flaherty House of Bondage 51For an African to protest against the degrading pass laws can be a deadly offense. On March 21, 1960, a crowd of blacks gathered in Sharpeville..to conduct a peaceful, unarmed protest against these despised laws.
1971 Rand Daily Mail 10 June 5The Government’s move to introduce a new system of dealing with influx and pass law offenders is seen by the Black Sash as another means of removing Black people from urban areas to homeland settlements.
1977 Time 2 May 22The ‘pass laws’..cost South Africa no less than $130 million a year to administer.
1980 L. Callinicos People’s Hist. of S. Afr. I. 39The first pass laws were introduced more than 200 years ago, in 1760, and applied to slaves in the Cape.
1990 Femina June 108Apartheid has to have a reservoir of cheap black labour, and the pass laws helped to provide this by controlling the movement of African people.
1992 [see colour bar].
A body of laws controlling the movement and residence rights of black people, differing from one period to the next, but particularly during the apartheid era implemented by endorsements in identity documents (the carrying of which was compulsory), and enforced by the imposition of fines and prison-sentences. Also attributive, and combinationpass law system, these laws collectively, and the way in which they were implemented;

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18971990