Miners protest points to key issue in South Africa: rage from the poor in one of the world’s most unequal societies

by Lydia Polgreen

JOHANNESBURG — When 360,000 gold and coal miners walked off the job in South Africa in 1987, protesting the poor pay and grim working conditions of apartheid-era mines, a charismatic young man named Cyril Ramaphosa, the firebrand leader of the National Union of Mineworkers, led the charge.