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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Literacy at South African Mission Stations
Authors:Fourie, JohanISNI
Ross, RobertISNI
Viljoen, RusselISNI
Periodical:Journal of Southern African Studies (ISSN 1465-3893)
Geographic terms:South Africa
The Cape
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/03057070.2014.931057
Abstract:Measures of education quality - primarily, years of schooling or literacy rates - are widely used to ascertain the contribution of human capital formation to long-run economic growth and development. This article, using a census of 4,678 mission station residents, documents literacy and numeracy rates of non-white citizens in nineteenth-century South Africa. The 1849 census allows for an investigation into how the mission stations influenced the growth of literacy in the Cape Colony. The authors find that all of the following factors matter for literacy performance: age, gender, duration of residence, whether the individual arrived at the station after the emancipation of slaves or was born there and, importantly, which missionary society was operating the station. The results offer new insights into the comparative performance of missionary societies in South Africa and contribute to the debate about the role of missionary societies in the development of a colonial society. App., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]