Original Research

‘Volkshelde’: die Boerekrygerbeeld en die konstruksie van Afrikanernasionalisme

K. du Pisani
Literator | Vol 20, No 3 | a491 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v20i3.491 | © 1999 K. du Pisani | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 26 April 1999 | Published: 26 April 1999

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Abstract

‘Volkshelde’: The image of the Boer warrior and the construction of Afrikaner nationalism
This article deals with the way in which the heroic image of the Boer warrior, who fought in the South African War, was adapted to particular socio-political needs in different phases of the development of Afrikaner nationalism. It is indicated how, in the pre-1961 period, potentially unifying elements of the image (the freedom struggle against British imperialism, the “bittereinder” metaphor, the republican ideal, a common religion and the allegedly egalitarian nature of the commando system) were used to promote “volkseenheid”. Post-1961 texts in Afrikaans historiography and literature are analysed to indicate how the Boer warrior image has been reconceptualised. This reconseptualised image is depicted against the background of changing fortunes for the Afrikaner, to reflect transforming Afrikaner values.

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