Aboriginality, Identity and Belonging in South Africa and Beyond

Brown, Duncan (2001). Aboriginality, Identity and Belonging in South Africa and Beyond. English in Africa, 28(1) pp. 67–90.

URL: http://www.open.ac.uk/Arts/ferguson-centre/staff-p...


Amongst the most pressing, and apparently intractable, problems facing postcolonial societies are the rights of peoples known variously as aboriginal peoples, first peoples or first nations: rights to land, self-determination, natural resources, mineral deposits, the preservation of sacred sites or customs, and so on. While some claims for aboriginal rights have been successful, they are often considered - in contexts of modern democracy, global capitalism and advanced technology - to be at best atavistic, or at worst completely incommensurable with their context. In this article I wish to consider whether the nature of such claims, indeed the nature of the societies which make them, is so 'different' - so removed from the concerns of modernity and postmodernity - or whether there are not also important aspects of 'identity'. Such a consideration may shed light not only on 'their' claims and concerns, but also on 'our' society and its often hubristic assumptions.

Viewing alternatives

No digital document available to download for this item

Item Actions