By Siegfried Huigen

Knowledge and Colonialism examines writings and drawings of eighteenth-century clinical travelers in South Africa opposed to the historical past of administrative and advertisement discourses. it's argued that those guests benefited extra from their courting with the colonial order than the wrong way round

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Additional resources for Knowledge and Colonialism: Eighteenth-century Travellers in South Africa (Atlantic World)

Sample text

1–50, pp. 840–846) are ignored, then 237 pages are devoted to the natural environment, 235 to original inhabitants and 256 to colonial society. Kolb arranged most of his material thematically. Only the third part contains a chronological account of political developments during his stay at the Cape. The rest of the material is arranged by subject, first in larger sections (nature, indigenous population and colonial society) and then in subdivisions by subject. This systematic presentation of information is in agreement with the recommendations of the ars apodemica, the art of travel, which recommended that information collected 16 As the text by Van Grevenbroek (his “Annotationes”, as Kolb called them) have not survived, all suspicions of plagiarism are based on guesswork and on Van Grevenbroek’s letter about the Khoikhoi (Van Grevenbroek, 1933).

45 46 18 chapter one personnel—he demands the reader’s attention. He regularly dishes up anecdotes about his baboon Kees, which was still a “virgin”; tells how he acted as peacemaker during his journey to the north-west and about his fascination with a Gonaqua girl he called Narina (‘flower’). Georg Forster, who was no less serious, took little notice of this. In a long review he effusively praises Le Vaillant because he succeeded so well in evoking a complete picture of the regions he had crossed.

The term ‘San’, introduced with the best intentions to get rid of the term ‘Bushmen’, is actually discriminating; in the language of the Khoikhoi it means something like ‘robbers’ or ‘stock thieves’. The South African anthropologist Schapera is responsible for the current popularity of the term ‘Khoisan’ as the umbrella term for Khoikhoi and San. However, this concept suggests a homogeneity that never existed. As for the term ‘blacks’, it is totally unclear who is referred to: all people in South Africa who are not ‘white’ or only some members of this group.

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