Original Research

Le mythe du bon sauvage Hottentot

M-J Boisacq
Literator | Vol 14, No 2 | a704 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v14i2.704 | © 1993 M-J Boisacq | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 May 1993 | Published: 03 May 1993

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M-J Boisacq,, South Africa

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Two themes in the Voyage á l'intérieur de I'Afrique par le Cap de Bonne-Espérance by Francois le Vaillant, 1790, attracted our attention: firstly, the criticism of the colonial system, modelled on Denis Diderot's criticism, and secondly, the description of the Hottentot people according to the mythical vision of the tribes as suggested by Jean-Jacques Rousseau. A brief explanation of Diderot's anti-colonial ideas and of the myth of the ‘noble Savage' as suggested by Rousseau, will be followed by a critical analysis of the Voyage ... so as to prove that this work is in perfect agreement with the ideologies existing in France during the second half of the 18th century and in line with the reformist notions of the thinkers who reconcile humanity and self-interest.


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