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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Aboriginal southern African storytelling and the shaping of early Afrikaans literature
Author:Willemse, HeinISNI
Periodical:Journal des africanistes (ISSN 1957-7850)
Geographic term:South Africa
folk tales
Afrikaans language
culture contact
literary history
Abstract:This article studies the changing perceptions of Afrikaner folklorists and literary critics on the origins of selected indigenous southern African oral tales during the past century. It is common knowledge that in colonial southern Africa indigenous storytellers frequently performed local tales to settler children. At the beginning of Afrikaner nationalism during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century the indigenous origins and authenticity of the performers and their performances were rarely in dispute. Fifty years later, at the time of the imminent victory of Afrikaner nationalism, Afrikaner folklorists and literary critics increasingly doubted the origins of these tales or the artistry of the storytellers. This article explores two such instances. The first section of the article serves as a background description of the issue and the second discusses the battle for authorship of the tale 'Klein Riet-alleen-in die-Roerkuil' ('Little Reed-alone-in-the-whirlpool'). Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]