The Cape Herders provides the first comprehensive picture of the Khoikhoi people. In doing so, it fills a long-standing gap in the resources of Southern African studies, and at a time when interest in the indigenous populations of South Africa is growing daily.
Combining the insights of archaeology, history, and anthropology, this account ranges from the origins of the Khoikhoi in Southern Africa to the contemporary politics of the Namaqualand “reserves.” Its authors have produced a scholarly, yet accessible, book, lavishly illustrated and supplemented with short biographies and fascinating detail.
The Cape Herders explodes a variety of South African myths—not least those surrounding the negative stereotype of the “Hottentot” and those which contribute to the idea that the Khoikhoi are by now “a vanished people.” The story it tells instead is one of enduring interest—the history of a herding people in Southern Africa, its society, economy, and culture, its relationship to the indigenous hunters of the Cape, its encounters with European expeditions, and its subsequent exposure to the first effects of colonization. It is a story of change and adaptation, and it confirms the Khoikhoi’s central role in the making of today’s South Africa.
Emile Boonzaier is a lecturer in anthropology at the University of Cape Town.
Candy Malherbe is a historian and writer.
Penny Berens has been a teacher and is a freelance writer and editor.
Andy Smith is an associate professor of archaeology at the University of Cape Town.
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A Burning Hunger shows the human catastrophe that plagued generations of black Africans in the powerful story of one religious and law-abiding Soweto family. Basing her narrative on extensive research and interviews, Lynda Schuster richly portrays this remarkable family and in so doing reveals black South Africa during a time of momentous change.
This book, by an anthropologist, historian, social anthropologist, and schoolteacher, introduces the long history and current condition of the hunting people of southern Africa to students, teachers, and interested laypersons. It places the modern San in historical context and shows how they have continually adapted to outside pressures, which are forcing them to fit into the modern states of Namibia and Botswana.
Traditionally, the Eastern Cape frontier of South Africa has been regarded as the preeminent contact zone between colonists and the Khoi—“Hottentots”—and San—“Bushmen.” But there was an earlier frontier in which the conflict between Dutch colonists and these indigenous herders and hunters was in many ways more decisive in its outcome, more brutal and violent in its manner, and just as significant in its effects on later South African history.