Telling her story : constructing a historiography of mrs Alice Brink – Afrikaner woman in mission

Botha, Bianca (2017-03)

Thesis (MTh)--Stellenbosch University, 2017.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study is an exploration of the life and history of Alice Mabel Brink, a woman who dedicated her life to the Dutch Reformed Church’s missionary endeavours in Nigeria in the early twentieth century, but who has been overlooked in the authoritative histories of Dutch Reformed mission in the past. In accordance with a new approach to history and church history, that focuses on uncovering untold stories and unknown dimensions of the past, this study seeks to tell the untold story of Alice Brink. It is an attempt to give a new perspective on a history that has previously only been viewed from the dominant, white, male perspective. This is done by reading and analysing four diaries (from 1913-1939) and one unpublished manuscript written by Alice Brink, and telling her story according to those writings. This historiography is constructed through the lens of feminist theory and therefore is concerned with analysing and exposing instances of oppression in Alice Brink’s story, as well as celebrating her flourishing and acts of resistance to the dominant order. Telling and listening to this story, however, also requires a general understanding of the contexts in which it takes place. Chapter 2 of this study, therefore, explores the context of early twentieth century mission, while chapter 3 discusses the context of gender and being a woman in early twentieth century South Africa. Chapter 4 contains the story of Alice Brink, constructed from my reading of her diaries. In chapter 5 a few themes are discussed, which emerged from my reading and telling of Alice Brink’s story. Chapter 6 presents a general conclusion regarding Alice Brink’s story and the themes discussed.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie ondersoek die lewe en geskiedenis van Alice Mabel Brink, 'n vrou wat haar lewe gewy het aan die NG Kerk se sending na Nigerië in die vroeë twintigste eeu, maar wat in die verlede oor die hoof gesien is in die geskiedskrywing van NG sending. In ooreenstemming met 'n nuwe benadering tot geskiedenis en kerkgeskiedenis, wat fokus op die ontdekking van ongekende stories en onbekende dimensies van die verlede, wil hierdie studie die onbekende verhaal van Alice Brink vertel. Dit is 'n poging om 'n nuwe perspektief te bied op 'n geskiedenis wat voorheen hoofsaaklik vanuit die dominante, wit, manlike perspektief vertel is. Hierdie perspektief word daar gestel deur vier dagboeke (1913-1939) en een ongepubliseerde manuskrip wat geskryf deur Alice Brink, te lees en te analiseer ten einde haar storie daarvolgens te vertel. Hierdie geskiedskrywing word gedoen deur die lens van feministiese teorie en fokus dus op die ontleding en blootstelling van elemente van onderdrukking in Alice Brink se storie, sowel as die viering van haar suksesse en dade van verset teen die dominante orde. Om hierdie storie te vertel en daarna te luister, vereis 'n algemene begrip van die konteks waarin dit plaasvind. Hoofstuk 2 van hierdie studie ondersoek dus die konteks van sending in die vroeë twintigste eeu, terwyl hoofstuk 3 die konteks van gender en vrou-wees in die vroeë twintigste eeu Suid-Afrika bespreek. Hoofstuk 4 bevat die verhaal van Alice Brink, wat saamgestel is vanuit my eie lees van haar dagboeke. In Hoofstuk 5 word enkele temas bespreek wat na vore gekom het in die verhaal. Hoofstuk 6 bied 'n algemene gevolgtrekking aangaande die verhaal van Alice Brink se en die temas wat bespreek is.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/101303
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