Khoisan consciousness: an ethnography of emic histories and indigenous revivalism in post-apartheid Cape Town

The Khoisan of the Cape are widely considered virtually extinct as a distinct collective following their decimation, dispossession and assimilation into the mixed-race group ‘coloured’ during colonialism and apartheid. However, since the democratic transition of 1994, increasing numbers of ‘Khoisan revivalists’ are rejecting their coloured identity and engaging in activism as indigenous people. Based on long-term ethnographic fieldwork in Cape Town, this book takes an unprecedented bottom-up approach. Centring emic perspectives, it scrutinizes Khoisan revivalism’s origins and explores the diverse ways Khoisan revivalists engage with the past to articulate a sense of indigeneity and stake political claims.

This book was published by Brill in the Afrika-Studiecentrum Series, volume 42. Buy the book from Brill.




Author(s) / editor(s)

Rafael Verbuyst

About the author(s) / editor(s)

Rafael Verbuyst

Rafael Verbuyst is a historian and anthropologist, currently working as a postdoctoral researcher within the Department of History of Ghent University. Also at Ghent University and at the University of the Western Cape he completed his doctoral research 'Khoisan consciousness. Articulating indigeneity in post-apartheid Cape Town'. Rafael graduated from the Research Master in African Studies cum laude at the ASCL/Leiden University in February 2016.


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