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How did Afrikaner Nationalism

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TessaEvaEmma History

on 23 October 2013

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Transcript of How did Afrikaner Nationalism

How did Afrikaner Nationalism
evolve from 1914 to 1948?

Afrikaans Nationalism began development during colonial period. First unified by common goal for independence and contempt for British control.
Progressed into a rich cultural identity.
Influence of WW2 and eugenics: ideology centered around will for white political control, ideas of superiority and oppression and exclusion of other cultural groups and races.
Set foundations for apartheid era.
The Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) favoured Afrikaners, while dealing with the heterogeneous country with racial segregation. This was viewed as fair because:
- It helped poor Afrikaans whites who competed with Africans for jobs in businesses (mining, banking and commerce) owned mostly by English speakers
- It would develop a healthy separation for people of different cultures do develop independently under white guardianship
Afrikaner state was a "Christian civilisation"
The church provided poor Afrikaners with secure communities in the city in which to live
Women were convinced to have many children in order to increase the number of patriotic Afrikaners and to implement relevant family values in the home
The Afrikaans language emphasized ethnicity and greatly distinguished between Afrikaners and other whites, especially those who spoke English
Organizations, e.g. SANTAM, encouraged investments from Afrikaans speaker to promote Afrikaner business and therefore political, social and economic gain
Supported the publication of Afrikaans books and magazines
ww2 - many afrikaans volunteered
Reference List
Brachin, P.,Vincent, P. (1985). The Dutch Language: A Survey. Brill Archive: 1985, p. 132
Beinart, W. Twentieth-Century South Africa. Oxford University Press, 1994: Cape Town.
Chapter 3 - Afrikaner Nationalism in the 1930s and 1940s. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.sahistory.org.za/archive/chapter-3-afrikaner-nationalism-1930s-and-1940s. [Accessed 20 October 2013].
Clark, N and Worger, W. "South Africa: The Rise and Fall of Apartheid". Pearson Education Limited, 2004: Great Britain.
Great Trek 1835-1846 | South African History Online. 2013.[ONLINE] Available at: http://www.sahistory.org.za/south-africa-1806-1899/great-trek-1835-1846. [Accessed 18 October 2013].
S.Grove', J.Manenzhe, A.Proctor, B.Tobin, G.Weldon. Via Afrika History. Via Afrika Publishers. 2012. Cape Town.
The Origins of Afrikaner Nationalism. 2013. [ONLINE] Available at: http://husky1.stmarys.ca/~wmills/course322/11Afrikaner_natm.html. [Accessed 20 October 2013].
The Significance of the Great Trek. 2013. [ONLINE] Available at: http://ancestry24.com/the-significance-of-the-great-trek/. [Accessed 20 October 2013].
P.McMahon, E.Schulman. X-Kit Grade 12. Maskew Miller Longman. 2001. Cape Town.
N.Frick, S.Janari, A.Proctor, G.Weldon, D.Wray, S.Heese. New Africa History Grade 11. New Africa Books (Pty) Ltd. 2006. Cape Town.
J.Bartels, N.Dlamini, S.du Rand, S.Haw, J.Kurbidza, P.Macallister, T.Middlebrook, A.Rogers. Shuters History Grade 12. Shuter & Shooter Publishers (Pty) Ltd. 2006. Cape Town.
Envorinmental Scarcity and Violent Conflict: The Case of South Africa. 1996. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.homerdixon.com/projects/eps/south/sa2.htm. [Accessed 20 October 2013].
Daniel Francois Malan - Wikipedia. 2013. [ONLINE] Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_François_Malan. [Accessed: 20 October 2013].
The ideology behind it
Abraham Kuyper: Dutch politician, journalist, an and theologian
Equality, fraternity and freedom (ideas of French Revolution) challenged God's authority of separate spherestatesms of creation - a notion challenging that of nationalism
South African Afrikaners believed to hold a "sacred history"
Who were the "Volk"?
"The chosen people" - Afrikaners
The white Afrikaners viewed themselves above British rulers and Black people because:
- British people did not have the "God-ordained" right to the land of South Africa
- Black people were representatives of other nations and should, therefore, be live in their own tribal areas
Sub-Question: How did the idea of "Volk" aid Afrikaner leaders in creating a sense of Afrikaner nationalism while isolating other South Africans in the process?
"Genuine religion, complete freedom and the pure preservation of one's white race and civilisation are essential requirements for our own Volk's existence. Without this the South African Volk can have no soul and no future."
SOURCE: Dr DF Malan's spoken words from the centenary celebration of the Great Trek in 1838
The Afrikaner Identity
- Black people in educational institutions run by missionaries, providing both a Christian and good quality education
- Economic depression of early 1900s developed poor white Afrikaner class
- Promoted employment opportunities by educating white Afrikaners with superior education
- Christian National Education (CNE) advocated separate schools for races and favoured whites but disadvantaged blacks
- Bantu Education gave black people the basic skills of how to work in a white-run country

"Our call to maintain and assert our language is not born out of racial hatred [towards the British] ...we are here concerned with our highest and holiest ethnic concerns, for defense of language means in the nature of the case defense of the People, because it means the cultivation and confirmation of national consciousness, national pride, national calling, and national destiny."
[Moodie, 1975: 109]
Afrikaans Language Movements
A tool in inculcating the idea of a common language and history, particularly after the loss of Afrikaner morale following their defeats in the South African War
(1875 - 1900)
"Die Genootskap van Regte Afrikaners (GRA) in Paarl aimed at developing a language distinct from Dutch
The term "Afrikaner" had been diminishing in association with white Afrikaners
It collapsed as a result of very small-scale influence:
- Functioned mainly in Paarl area
- "Die Patriot" was the only voice of the Movement
(1900 - 1930)
Anglicization (forcing all Afrikaners to speak English) was challenged to renew Afrikaans as a language
Netherlands helped private school start up with a focus on Christian Afrikaner nationalism
Dutch was given official status but a desire for a separate Afrikaans language was provoked
1933: The bible was translated in Afrikaans
Rewrote South African history - biased towards Afrikaner struggle against British and Black people
Early Development of the Afrikaner Identity
The basis of Afrikaner Nationalism
Afrikaner nationalism was born in the late 19th century- centered around the idea that the Afrikaners were the 'chosen people' to be in control of South Africa.
Links to religion: unifying element of Afrikaner Nationalism- believed that it was God's will for the Afrikaans people to rule South Africa.
Believed the British settlers did not have this God given right to South African territory- pride and exclusion.
South Africa was under British control.
Resulted in a common goal to gain independence.
Desire for control over South Africa: unifying factor.
The Great Trek (1835-1846) was the movement of Afrikaans speaking people from the Cape all over South Africa in search of a Boer homeland independent of British rule.
Boer republics established primarily in Transvaal and Orange Free State.
Afrikaans people in close proximity- sharing of ideas.
United by common goal for freedom from British as well as common belief that Africans were inferior and were to be controlled..
Boer Republics: also separated Afrikaners from others: exclusion and exclusivity.
Isolation: conditions necessary to form unique identity.
Had independent governance and armies in Boer Republics.
Wasn't enough, still wanted to destroy colonial influence in South Africa: unified by common goal.
Great Trek: traveled far. Symbolised bravery and determination of the Boers- basis for pride that is associated with nationalism.
Boers fight for independence
Eventually colonial control ends in South Africa: war- too expensive for British.
Triumph for Afrikaners- symbol of strength and resilience.
Sense of pride.
Idea that Boers as a unified force could achieve their goals.
Union Constitution of 1910 placed power in white Boer's hands & relinquished British control
Black South Africas: denied rights.
Ideas of white superiority and dominance entrenched in ideology.
Influence of WW2 and eugenics- influenced laws that favoured whites in the future.
Maps showing the movement of the Great Trek and the Boer Republics.
Painting showing the Voortrekker monument.
Application of Afrikaans History in the 1930s and 1940s
Emphasis placed on History in order to reawaken and intensify Afrikaans Nationalism in the 1930s.
1938: The Great Trek Centenary- celebration of the Great Trek.
Wagons travelled from Cape Town to the North- ''Second Great Trek.
Overwhelming reception among the Afrikaans community- unified and riled up spirit, pride and optimism.
Couples even married by wagons.
Roads named after Voortrekkers. Eg- Voortrekker Road.
Past triumphs unified even in the future- National Party spoke about the Boer War and Great Trek in speeches.
Impact of the Anglo-Boer War
Influence of the Great Trek and the Boer Republics
Text Source :
''It (Afrikaner Identity) contrasted strongly with that of the English. Among the Afrikaners the English were occupiers who exuded an offensive air of superiority and cultural dominance.."

Source: review of Herman Giliomee's ''The Afrikaners: Biography of a people'' (written in 2013)
Impact of WW2
Colonies to Indep. Nations
- set in motion powerful new forces demanding independance from colonial rule.
- economies destroyed by col. war and exploitation = too difficult
- therefore peaceful handovers
- 1950s Egypt, India, Ghana from Britain
- Therefore in SA - N.P. united Afrik & some Eng speakers into a powerful racial alliance that won the general election 1948
- Instituted racial policy
- Using fear : created a PERCEPTION that democracy in SA -> black domination & communist dictatorship.
- Won Western Powers support & were able to suppress democratic movement entrenching apartheid
Impact of Afrikaans history on the nature of the Ideology
Idea that Afrikaans speaking white people were destined to rule South Africa: made the definition of a South African citizen exclusive.
Exclusion of black South Africans as proper citizens in future- Apartheid and modern Afrikaner nationalism
Outbreak of WW2

Hertzog (P.M. at time) proposed neutrality supported by DF Malan.
-If participate for Germans- end of British Commonwealth membership - something they wanted.
-Justified Hitlers Invasion of Poland
- Smuts (opposition) accused Hertzog of being Pro-German. Was supported by Labour Party and Dominion Parties and won.
- SA involved in war.
-Required to make own amunnition
- Industry boom
Source: Photograph of the first edition of Afrikaans bibles, completed in 1933 by Rev. S.J. Du Toit’s son, Rev. J.D. Du Toit, assisted by E.E. van Rooyen, J.D. Kestell, H.C.M. Fourie, and B.B. Keet.
Source: The national anthem of South African in 1957 to 1994, entitled "Die Stem van Suid Afrika"
DF Malan started Die Burger newspaper
Die Transvaler was started.
Both spread ideas of Afrikamer Nationalism.
"Koers" ("Direction") Christian nationalistic journal
- promoted an
community of a homogenous nation
- of the same kind eg: white or Afrikaans
- Die Huisgenoot - promoting family life and afrikaans traditions
National Party & Media
DF Malan organised and communicated his ideas well - first editor of Die Burger
- NP popularize in rural areas
- ready to listen to DF Malans campaigne in desparation & hope
- drought and food shortages
Post War Economic Problems
Deterioration of agricultural conditions in reserves and pressure of land in rural areas --> many black families move URBAN
- Drought
- Food shortages

Employers needed more skilled labour - business good due to war (Gold kept SA afloat) also many Afrikaners gone to fight in war.
Therefore gave skilled jobs to black workers

This lead to increasing black population in cities led government to appoint Fagan Commission to investigate the issue of black urbanisation.
Black reaction to the war
- Growing African Nationalism
- lack of political rights
- bus boycotts
- govt. investigate living and working conditions
- food riots in mining compounds and educ. institutions
- series of strikes 1942
- black trade union gained support
- 1946 large strike on mines.
- strained relations

National Party taking advantage of FEAR
Whites alarmed increasing black numbers
"supposed to be" jobs reserved for whites only
N.P. promised to increase segreation and stop black political activity
Appealed to afrikaner voter
kept their own interests at bay

Intensifying control
attacked any opposing ideas such as "South Africanism" - was not strong enough to counter the emotional appeal
National Party in power 1948
very narrow margin
- turned all resources of the state towards building a solid, uncirical block of Afrikaner support for continuing racial domination
- controlled schools - nationalism young ages
- Economy benefit Afrikaans businesses
- suppress lower class demans (blacks)
- crushed black resistance
- Huge profits for all white business
Through this, threw all support behind the NP. WHite society became stronger and black society was continuously suppressed.
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