The Politics of Race, Class, and Nationalism in Twentieth-Century South Africa

The Politics of Race, Class, and Nationalism in Twentieth-Century South Africa

The Politics of Race, Class, and Nationalism in Twentieth-Century South Africa

The Politics of Race, Class, and Nationalism in Twentieth-Century South Africa

Excerpt

The chapters in this collection address the issues of ethnic boundary-making and the construction of nationalist ideologies and political consciousness against South Africa's changing political economy and class composition since the era of the mineral discoveries in the late nineteenth century.

The volume begins with Saul Dubow's delineation of the evolution of a hegemonic segregationist ideology, and is followed by a chapter by Isabel Hofmeyr which analyses the 'invention' of 'Afrikaner' culture in the early twentieth century. Iris Berger explores the class consciousness of white women workers in the Garment Workers' Union as an alternative to Afrikaner nationalist identification which none the less did not wholly escape the racism institutionalised by the state. Ian Goldin looks at the state's intervention in the definition of 'Coloured' ethnic identity, while Maureen Swan looks at two moments in the radicalisation of Indian political movements in South Africa. These four chapters are followed by a cluster of essays on the making of African nationalist consciousness; Robert Hill and Gregory Pirio examine the role of Garveyism in the creation of an Africanist ideology which permeated all black political organisations in the 1920s; Colin Bundy discusses the relationship of both nationalists and radicals to the agrarian question; William Beinart considers the relationship of migrant workers to rural social and urban political networks; and Tom Lodge uses a case study of urban political conflict to examine the nature of African nationalism in the 1950s. In another case study, Phil Bonner and Rob Lambert analyse ethnicity and class on the East Rand in the 1950s in the light of the Amato textile strike of 1959. The last three chapters by Brian Hackland, Stanley Greenberg and Deborah Posel . . .

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