This chapter traces the evolution of the national curriculum under the apartheid regime. It begins by briefly tracing the origins of a traditional curriculum that was largely inherited from the colonizers of South Africa from the 17th century onwards. It shows how a progressivist orientation to curriculum was introduced in early discourse around curriculum, especially in the 1930s. A regressive form of traditional curriculum dominated the apartheid years, however, as schooling was massified. As discontent with apartheid schooling grew in the 1970s and 1980s in particular, the traditional curriculum became a strong symbol of the oppressive apartheid state. This explains some of the late apartheid state's attempts at curriculum reform, and also partly explains the nature of the first democratic curriculum that rejected entirely the structuring and organization of the traditional curriculum established in the apartheid years.