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Heimat in the Veld?
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Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht
By the end of the twentieth century, most descendants of the Berlin missionaries in South Africa... mehr
Heimat in the Veld?
By the end of the twentieth century, most descendants of the Berlin missionaries in South Africa had become integrated into Afrikaans-speaking white society to the extent that they could “pass” as Afrikaners, many of them also selfidentifying as such. The complex undertones of German-South African identitybecome apparent when looking into early twentieth century projects run by missionaries and their sons with the aim of ingratiating themselves with the Afrikaner establishment as “twin souls” – German-Afrikaners. This article makes use of Afrikaans and German popular magazines, and German-South African works of fiction (short stories as well as novels), not in the first instance for their literary quality, but rather for the extent towhich these media served as performative spaces in which German-South African men could act out their various social roles and contemplate the convergence between different identities assumed for different occasions. Particular attention is paid to the “backstage” of female domesticity, and how the construction of the ideal German Hausfrau continued to anchor male “occasionalism” well into the twentieth century, until this sublimated figure became too problematic when seen in the context of other local possibilities, often embodied by Afrikaner women.