From South-West Africa to Namibia: Subjective Well-Being Twenty-One Years After Independence

  • Martina PerstlingEmail author
  • Sebastiaan Rothmann
Part of the Cross-Cultural Advancements in Positive Psychology book series (CAPP, volume 6)


This chapter, endorsed by Martina Perstling (Namibia) and Ian Rothmann (South Africa), takes us to a historical and fascinating journey addressing the relationships between Namibia and South Africa. It brings the studies of subjective well-being to the front line, at the radiance of such complex experiences as war, independence, and nation building. The relationship between the two countries, encompassed with the occasionally dramatic internal struggles for human rights, reconciliation, and equality within Namibia, is explored in the chapter while envisioning restorative processes, some of them under way, and to promote better futures that will fulfill the aspirations of the citizens of those countries, while honoring the best of the past.


Refugee Camp African National Congress National Party South African Government Solitary Confinement 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Absalom, J. (2011, December 16). Ministry condemns selling of children. Economist, 21.Google Scholar
  2. Anderson, C. (2008). International conscience, the cold war and apartheid: The NAACP’s alliance with the Reverend Michael Scott for South West Africa’s liberation, 1946–1851. Journal of World History, 19(3), 297–325.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Anon. (1978). Hitting SWAPO where it lives to win its way to South West Africa, Pretoria gambles. Times, 111, 20. Retrieved on July, 7, 2011, from Academic Search Premier Database.Google Scholar
  4. Breyer, K. (1979). Moskaus Faust in Afrika. Stuttgart: Seewald Verlag.Google Scholar
  5. Brown, R. (1992). Economic revolutions in Britain 1750–1850. London: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  6. Clough, S. B., & Cole, C. W. (1966). Economic history of Europe (3rd ed.). Boston: Heath & Co.Google Scholar
  7. Davids, Y. D., & Gaibie, F. (2011). Quality of life in post-apartheid South Africa. Politikon, 38(2), 231–256.Google Scholar
  8. Diener, E. (2006). Understanding scores on the satisfaction with life. Copyright Ed Diener, 13th February 2006. Retrieved on December 23, 2010, from the World Wide Web:
  9. Diener, E., & Ryan, K. (2009). Subjective well-being: A general overview. South African Journal of Psychology, 39, 391–406.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Diener, E., Kesebir, P., & Lucas, R. (2008). Benefits of accounts of well-being: For societies and for psychological science. Applied Psychology: An International Journal, 57, 37–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Dobell, L. (1997). Silence in context: Truth and/or reconciliation in Namibia. Journal of Southern African Studies, 23(2), 371–387.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Edwards, L. (2006). HIV/AIDS and gender in Africa: Confronting our sexuality and inequalities. In B. F. Bankie & K. Mchombu (Eds.), Pan-Africanism: Strengthening the unity of Africa and its diaspora (pp. 105–118). Windhoek: University of Namibia.Google Scholar
  13. Ekongo, J. (2012, January 10). Gangsterism on the rise. New Era, 1–2.Google Scholar
  14. Engombe, L. (2004). Kind Nr.95. Berlin: Ullstein Buchverlag GmbH.Google Scholar
  15. Fumanti, M. (2002). Small town élites in northern Namibia: The complexity of class formation in practice. In V. Winterfeldt, T. Fox, & P. Mufune (Eds.), Namibia society sociology (pp. 169–177). Windhoek: University of Namibia.Google Scholar
  16. Gonzo, W., & Plattner, I. E. (2003). Unemployment in an African country: A psychological perspective. Windhoek: University of Namibia Press.Google Scholar
  17. Goosen, D., van Wietersheim, E., Katzao, J. J., Mbumba, N., O’Callaghan, B., Patemann, H., van Staden, E. I., & Tait, D. H. A. (2007). Understanding history in context. Windhoek: Longman Namibia (Pty) Ltd.Google Scholar
  18. Haidula, L., Perstling, M., Riekert, C. A., Naweya, M., Manuel, T. L., Sibanda, T., Langfellner, J., Theron, S., & Hamibili, H. I. (2007). Student perceptions of abusive behaviours in male–female relationships. New Voices in Psychology, 3(2), 92–102.Google Scholar
  19. Heita, D. (2011, October 14). Poverty in a sea of riches. New Era, 1–2.Google Scholar
  20. Hishongwa, N. (1992). The contract labor system and its effects on family and social life in Namibia. A historical perspective. Windhoek: Gamsberg Macmillan.Google Scholar
  21. Horsthemke, O. (2004). Land reform in Namibia: Opportunity or opportunism. In J. Hunter (Ed.), Who should own the land? Windhoek: Konrad Adenauer Stiftung, Namibia Institute for Democracy.Google Scholar
  22. Hoyle, R. (1981, September 14). Marching to Pretoria’s beat. Time, 0040781X, 118(11).Google Scholar
  23. Hunter, J. (2004). Who should own the land? Windhoek: Konrad Adenauer Stiftung/Namibia Institute for Democracy.Google Scholar
  24. Hitting SWAPO where it lives to win its way in South West Africa. (1978, May 5). Times 0040781X, 111(20).Google Scholar
  25. Irwin, R. M. (2010). Apartheid on trial: South West Africa and the International Court of Justice 1960–66. The International History Review, 32(4), 619–642.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Isaak, P., & Lombard, C. (2002). Religion and its impact on Namibian Society. In V. Winterfeldt, T. Fox, & P. Mufune (Eds.), Namibia society sociology (pp. 87–123). Windhoek: University of Namibia.Google Scholar
  27. Katjavivi, P., & Shimming-Chase, E. (2012, January 9). In honour of ANC’s 100th birthday. Discussion forum on the Namibian Broadcasting Channel.Google Scholar
  28. Klein, G. L. (2011). Publicising the African National Congress: The anti-apartheid news. South African Historical Journal, 63(3), 394–413.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Kotsebi, L. (2011, December 16). Women not the only ones at fault. Economist, 5.Google Scholar
  30. Krog, A. (2008). This thing called reconciliation: Forgiveness as part of an interconnectedness-towards-wholeness. South African Journal of Philosophy, 27(4), 353–366.Google Scholar
  31. Kros, C. (2010). Public history/heritage: Translation, transgression or more of the same? African Studies, 69, 63–77.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Lauren, H., & Swartz, S. (2011). The professionalization of psychology within the apartheid state 1948–1978. History of Psychology, 14(3), 249–263.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. LeBeau, D. (2005). An investigation into the lives of Namibian ex-fighters, fifteen years after independence. Windhoek: PEACE Centre.Google Scholar
  34. Linder, D. O. (2010). The Nelson Mandela (Rivonia) Trial: An account. Retrieved on January, 25, 2012, from the World Wide Web:
  35. Linley, P. A., Joseph, S., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2004). Positive psychology in practice. Hoboken: Wiley.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Lu, Y., & Treiman, D. J. (2011). Migration, remittances and educational stratification among blacks in apartheid and post-apartheid South Africa. Social Forces, 88(4), 1119–1144.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. May, T. (1987). An economic and social history of Britain 1760–1970. London: Longman Group.Google Scholar
  38. Menges, W. (2011, October 14). Shalli’s bank account frozen. The Namibian, 1–2.Google Scholar
  39. Meyer, W. F., Moore, C., & Viljoen, H. G. (1997). Personology: From individual to ecosystem. Sandton/Johannesburg: Heinemann.Google Scholar
  40. Mlambo, A. (2011). Discover history. Sandton: Heinemann.Google Scholar
  41. Mufune, P. (2002). Youth in Namibia: Social exclusion and poverty. In V. Winterfeldt, T. Fox, & P. Mufune (Eds.), Namibia society sociology (pp. 179–195). Windhoek: University of Namibia.Google Scholar
  42. Murithi, T. (2009). An African perspective on peace education: Ubuntu lessons in reconciliation. International Review of Education, 55, 221–233.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Museums and Libraries in Windhoek. (2012). Olukonda National Monument. Retrieved on April 4, 2012, from the World Wide Web:
  44. National Planning Commission. (2001). Namibia 2001 population and housing census. Retrieved on January 13, 2012, from the World Wide Web:
  45. Nortje, P. (2003). 32 Battalion: The inside story of South Africa’s elite fighting unit. Cape Town: Zebra Press.Google Scholar
  46. O’Callaghan, B. (2011). Understanding history: The world and Africa. Windhoek: Longman Namibia (Pty) Ltd.Google Scholar
  47. Parsons, T. (1977). The evolution of societies. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
  48. Perstling, M., & Rothmann, S. (2012). Well-being and secondary traumatic stress of social workers in Namibia. Journal of Psychology in Africa, 22, 1–9.Google Scholar
  49. Pucherova, D. (2011). A romance that failed: Bessie Head and black nationalism in 1960s South Africa. Research in African Literature, 42(2), 105–124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Riggs, D. S., & Foa, E. B. (2004). Posttraumatic stress disorder. In C. D. Spielberger (Ed.), Encyclopaedia of applied psychology (Vol. 2, pp. 83–90). Maryland Heights: Academic Press/Elsevier.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Riruako, H. (2006). Which way Africa: A multifaceted/dimensional discourse shaped by paradoxes that characterize both Africans and Africans in the diaspora. In B. F. Bankie & K. Mchombu (Eds.), Pan-Africanism: Strengthening the unity of Africa and its diaspora (pp. 27–30). Windhoek: University of Namibia.Google Scholar
  52. Saunders, C. (2002). Namibia’s freedom struggle: The Nujoma version. South African Historical Journal, 47(1), 203–212.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Seely, M., & Zeidler, J. (2002). Land distribution and sustainable development. In V. Winterfeldt, T. Fox, & P. Mufune (Eds.), Namibia society sociology (pp. 75–84). Windhoek: University of Namibia.Google Scholar
  54. Stiff, P. (2000). Cry Zimbabwe: Independence, twenty years on. Alberton: Galago Publishing.Google Scholar
  55. United Nations Institute for Namibia. (1988). Namibia: Perspectives for national reconstruction and development. Lusaka: United Nations Institute for Namibia.Google Scholar
  56. Van der Watt, L. (2009). The comradely ideal and the Volksmoeder ideal: Uncovering gender ideology in the Voortrekker tapestry. Retrieved January 5, 2012, from the World Wide Web:
  57. Van Zyl, S. (1999). An interview with Gillian Straker on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa. Psychoanalytic Dialogue, 9(2), 245–274.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Vedder, H. (1985). Das alte Südwestafrika – Südwestafrikas Geschichte bis zi, Tode Mahareros 1890. Berlin: Martin Warneck Verlag.Google Scholar
  59. Werner, W. (2002). The current state of land reform in Namibia – Some facts and figures. Unpublished master’s dissertation, University of Namibia, Windhoek.Google Scholar
  60. Winterfeldt, V. (2002). Labor migration in Namibia – Gender aspects. In V. Winterfeldt, T. Fox, & P. Mufune (Eds.), Namibia sociology (pp. 39–74). Windhoek: University of Namibia.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychology, Faculty of Humanities and Social SciencesUniversity of NamibiaWindhoekNamibia
  2. 2.Clinical Psychologist Private PracticeWindhoekNamibia
  3. 3.Faculty of HumanitiesNorth West UniversityVanderbijlparkSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations