Coloured migration in the Cape region at the beginning of the 21th century

Bekker, Simon ; Cramer, Joseph (2003)

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INTRODUCTION: During the twentieth century, the port of Cape Town transformed itself from a town of some 150 000 to a city of 3 million. Before this period, different cultural traits of in-migrating and resident groups had mixed and produced new syncretic features that were passed on to the next generation. In the second half of this century, however, state policies imposed separation and unequal access to state resources among groups within this population. Accordingly, the identities of coloured, black and white – imposed as they have been by the state from above – could not but continue to carry meaning in the lives of Cape Town’s residents and of those living in its hinterlands. Though rarely the primary identities of residents, these labels are widely acknowledged to be both shared and meaningful.

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