Advertisement

The Birth of a Plural Society

  • T. R. H. Davenport
  • Christopher Saunders

Abstract

European association with southern Africa began with the Portuguese circumnavigation of the Cape of Good Hope at the end of the fifteenth century. With rare exceptions, however, the Portuguese did not land there, preferring to frequent Saint Helena and east coast havens rather than put in at the ‘Cape of Storms’. Although the English, French and Dutch East India Companies all considered establishing a base during the seventeenth century, only the Dutch did so. On 6 April 1652, Jan van Riebeeck arrived with three ships to settle in Table Bay. The high sickness and mortality rates among sailors reflected in the Cape Journal of the Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie (VOC) show what chiefly lay behind the decision, for the worst cases on record were very severe. Three vessels which arrived on 18 February 1726 had lost between them 251 men out of a total of 557 on board; another two which arrived on 15 February 1732 had lost 370 out of 439; and Moodie records that in 1771 twelve ships lost between them 1,034 men — approximately half their crews — chiefly from scurvy. The continuing need for a vegetable garden and a hospital, which Van Riebeeck was instructed to establish, is not hard to understand.

Keywords

Eighteenth Century Race Attitude White Mother Plural Society Human Problem 
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.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Bibliographical Notes

2.1 The early years of European settlement

  1. Axelson E., The Portuguese in South-East Africa, 1600–1700 (1960); and Vasco da Gama: The Diary of his Travels through African Waters, 1497–99 (1998);Google Scholar
  2. Botha C. G., The French Refugees at the Cape (1919);Google Scholar
  3. Boucher M., French-Speakers at the Cape: The European Background (1981);Google Scholar
  4. Boxer C. R., The Portuguese Seaborne Empire (1969) and The Dutch Seaborne Empire (1965); Freund W. in *Elphick and Giliomee 324–57;Google Scholar
  5. Gerstner J., The Thousand Generation Covenant (1990);Google Scholar
  6. Guelke L., ‘The anatomy of a colonial settler population: Cape Colony, 1657–1750’, IJAHS 21 (1988) 453–73;Google Scholar
  7. and with Shell R., ‘An early colonial landed gentry: land and wealth in the Cape Colony, 1682–1731’, JHG9 (1983) 265–86;CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Heese J. A., Die Herkoms van die Afrikaner, 1657–1867 (1971); Google Scholar
  9. Hoge J., Personalia of the Germans at the Cape, 1652–1806, AYB (1946), and Bydrae tot die Genealogie van ons Afrikaanse Families (1958);Google Scholar
  10. Moodie D., The Record (1960 reprint);Google Scholar
  11. Nathan M., The Huguenots in South Africa (1939);Google Scholar
  12. Pama C. (ed.), Geslachtregisters van die Ou Kaapse Families van C.C. de Villiers hersien en aangevul (1981);Google Scholar
  13. Raven-Hart R., The Cape of Good Hope, 1652–1702 (1971);Google Scholar
  14. Ross R., ‘The rise of the Cape gentry’, JSAS 9 (1983) 193–217; and Beyond the Pale (1993) 50–68; and in *Elphick and Giliomee 243–82; Schutte G. in *Elphick and Giliomee 283–323;Google Scholar
  15. Spilhaus M. W., South Africa in the Making, 1652–1806 (1966);Google Scholar
  16. Thorn H. B., The Journal of Jan van Riebeeck, 1651–62 (3 vols, 1952–58).Google Scholar

2.2 The Khoikhoi and the Dutch

  1. Elphick (n. 1.2), and with Malherbe V. C. in *Elphick and Giliomee (1989) 3–65; Leibbrandt H.C.V., Précis of the Archives of the Cape of Good Hope: Journal 1651–7, 1676, 1699–1732 (1896–1901);Google Scholar
  2. Marks S., ‘Khoisan resistance to the Dutch in the 17th and 18th centuries’, JAH 13 (1972) 55–80; Smith (n. 1.2.); Thorn (n. 2.1).CrossRefGoogle Scholar

2.3 Cape slavery

  1. Adhikari M., Cuthbertson G., Dooling W., Van der Spuy P. and Worden N., ‘Cape Slavery and its legacy’, SAHJ 27 (1992) 3–112; Armstrong J. C. in *Elphick and Giliomee 109–83;Google Scholar
  2. Bank A., The Decline of Urban Slavery at the Cape, 1806–43 (1992);Google Scholar
  3. Boeseken A., Slaves and Free Blacks at the Cape, 1658–1700 (1977);Google Scholar
  4. Bradlow F. and Cairns M., The Early Cape Muslims (1978);Google Scholar
  5. Cooper F., ‘The problem of slavery in African studies’, JAH 20 (1979) 103–25;CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Davids A., The Mosques of Bo-Kaap (1980); *Elphick and Giliomee 184–242; Fredrickson (n. 20.1);Google Scholar
  7. Keegan T., Colonial South Africa and the Origins of the Racial Order (1996);Google Scholar
  8. Ross R., Cape of Torments: Slavery and Resistance in South Africa (1983);Google Scholar
  9. Shell R.C.-H., Children of Bondage (1994) and in *Elphick and Giliomee 184–202;Google Scholar
  10. Van der Spuy P., ‘Gender and slavery: towards a feminist revision’, SAHJ 25 (1991) 184–95;Google Scholar
  11. Van Zyl D. J., ‘Die slaaf in die ekonomiese lewe van die westelike distrikte van die Kaapkolonie, 1795–1834’, SAHJ 10 (1978) 3–25;Google Scholar
  12. Watson R. L., The Slave Question: Liberty and Property in South Africa (1990);Google Scholar
  13. Worden N., Slavery in Dutch South Africa (1985);Google Scholar
  14. and with Crais C. Breaking the Chains: Slavery and Its Legacy in the 19th Century Cape Colony (1994).Google Scholar

2.4 The VOC and the Cape station

  1. Davenport T. R. H. in *Wilson and Thompson I (1969) 272–333; Du Toit A. and Giliomee H., Afrikaner Political Thought (1983);Google Scholar
  2. Fouché L. ed. The Diary of Adam Tas (1970 edn.); Katzen M. F. in *Wilson and Thompson I (1969) 187–232; Ross R. (n. 2.1.) and in *Elphick and Giliomee 243–82; Schutte G. in *Elphick and Giliomee 283–323.Google Scholar

2.5. The evolution of the Cape frontier in the eighteenth century (a) Emergence of the trekboer

  1. Giliomee H. in *Elphick and Giliomee 358–420, and in *Lamar H. and Thompson L. M. 76–119; Guelke L. in *Elphick and Giliomee 66–108; Legassick in *Elphick and Giliomee 358–420; and in *Marks and Atmore 44–79; MacCrone I. D., Race Attitudes in South Africa (1937);Google Scholar
  2. Neumark S. D., The South African Frontier (1957); Penn N., ‘Land, labour and livestock in the western Cape in the 18th century’ in *Jarnes and Simons 2–19; and Rogues, Rebels and Runaways: Eighteenth Century Cape Characters (1999); Reyburn H. A., ‘Studies in Cape Frontier History’, The Critic Oct. 1934–June 1935;Google Scholar
  3. Robertson H. M., ‘Some doubts concerning early land tenure at the Cape’, SAJE 3 (1935) 158–72; and ‘150 years of economic contact between black and white’, SAJE 2 (1934) 403–25 and 3 (1935) 3–25;CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Van der Merwe P. J., Die Kafferoorlog van 1793 (1940), and Die Trekboer in die Geskiedenis van die Kaapkolonie (1938), and Die Noordwaartse Beweging van die Boere voor die Groot Trek, 1771–1842 (1937);Google Scholar
  5. Walker E. A., The Frontier Tradition in South Africa (1930).Google Scholar

(b) Conflict between the trekboers and Khoisan

  1. *Eldredge and Morton (n. 1.4); Guelke and Shell (n. 2.1); Keegan (n. 2.3); Marais J. S., The Cape Coloured People (1937);Google Scholar
  2. Malherbe V. C., ‘Indentured and unfree labour in South Africa…’, SAHJ 24 (1991) 3–30; and (Ph.D., Cape Town 1997); Moodie (n. 2.1); Penn (n. 2.5);Google Scholar
  3. Ross R. ‘Griqua government’, AS 33 (1974) 25–42 and (n. 3.1);Google Scholar
  4. Schoeman K., Griqua Records: the Philippolis Captaincy, 1825–61 (1996); Van der Merwe (n. 2.5).Google Scholar

2.6 The creation of a stratified society

  1. *Elphick and Giliomee 521–66; Gerstner (n. 2.1); Guelke L. and Shell R. (n. 2.1); Keegan (n. 2.3); Legassick M., in *Elphick and Giliomee 3;58–420; MacCrone (n. 2.5).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© T. R. H. Davenport and Christopher Saunders 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. R. H. Davenport
    • 1
  • Christopher Saunders
    • 2
  1. 1.Rhodes UniversityGrahamstownSouth Africa
  2. 2.University of Cape TownSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations