An Archaeology of Colonial Identity: Power and Material Culture in the Dwars Valley, South Africa / Edition 1

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Overview

Globalism is not solely a contemporary phenomenon but has an important history as archaeologists routinely demonstrate by unearthing traces of this process at numerous sites around the world. For example, 18th century Chinese pottery has been found from the Netherlands to North America, and from South Africa to Iceland. Not only does this international dispersal of material culture demonstrate an emergent global network of commodities, it also gives an insight into the people who defined themselves by such possessions. It is this material culture in the form of buildings and broken objects, which provide an alternative perspective from the textual and visual sources at our disposal.

An Archaeology of Colonial Identity examines how colonial identities were constructed in the Cape Colony of South Africa from its establishment in the 17th century up to the 20th century. It is an explicitly archaeological approach but one which also draws more widely on documentary material to examine how different people in the colony - from settler to slave - constructed identities through material culture.

The book explores three key groups: The Dutch East India Company, the free settlers, and the slaves, through a number of archaeological sites and contexts. With the archaeological evidence, the book examines how these different groups were enmeshed within racial, sexual, and class ideologies in the broader context of capitalism and colonialism, and draws extensively on current social theory, in particular post-colonialism, feminism, and Marxism.

This book is aimed primarily at archaeologists, but will also attract historians and those interested in cultural theory and material culture studies. Specifically, historical archaeologists and students of historical archaeology will be the primary readers of this volume.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Lucas's linkage of finds, buildings and wider landscapes into a theoretical framework shows historical archaeology at its best.

Paul Courtney, Post Medieval Archaeology

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Product Details

Table of Contents

Ch. 1 Working contexts 1
Ch. 2 The archaeology of Dutch capitalism and the colonial trade 19
Ch. 3 Status and settlement in the Cape Colony 67
Ch. 4 Farm lives 119
Ch. 5 Forging identities 177
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