Eduardo Mondlane was born on June 20, , in the Gaza district of southern Mozambique. The son of a Tsonga chief and the only member of his large family to receive even a primary education, he later attributed his educational drive to the vision of a "very determined and persistent" mother. The colonial school system was almost exclusively for Europeans, but Mondlane gained entry into a Swiss mission school and went from it to an American Methodist agricultural school. He then served for 2 years instructing African peasants in techniques of dry farming. Next Mondlane obtained a scholarship and admission to a Presbyterian secondary school in the Transvaal, South Africa, and in he was admitted to Witwatersrand University of Johannesburg, the first African from Mozambique to enter a South African university. In the South African government declared him an unwanted "foreign native" in a white university and revoked his student permit.
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He worked as a shepherd until the age of He attended several different primary schools before enrolling in a Swiss— Presbyterian school near Manjacaze. He then spent one year at the Jan H. Hofmeyr School of Social Work before enrolling in Witwatersrand University in Johannesburg but was expelled from South Africa after only a year, in , following the rise of the Apartheid government.
Mondlane enrolled at Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio , in , starting as a junior, and in he obtained a degree in anthropology and sociology. He continued his studies at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. In , he resigned from his post at Syracuse to move to Tanzania to fully engage in the liberation struggle.
However, Mondlane showed little interest in the offer and later joined the Mozambican pro-independence movements in Tanzania, who lacked a credible leader. Their opponents, prominent among whom were Nkavandame and Simango , wanted independence, but not a fundamental change in social relations: essentially the substitution of a black elite for the white elite.
The socialist position was approved by the Second Party Congress, held in July ; Mondlane was re-elected party President, and a strategy of protracted war based on support among the peasantry as opposed to a quick coup attempt was adopted.
It exploded when he opened the package in the house of an American friend, Betty King, killing him. It is still located in the capital city of independent Mozambique.
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