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Fatalism and Dissidence in Dukuduku, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa : Ongoing Contestations Over Land, Resources and Identities

Aardenburg, Elizabeth and Nel, Adrian (2019) In Journal of Southern African Studies
Abstract

This article explores the use of identity politics in conflicts that pertain to land, land restitution and traditional authority in northern KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, and more specifically the Dukuduku area. Under the influence of past geographic displacements, ongoing neoliberal transformations and the transition to democracy under the post-apartheid government, not least including contested traditional authority, the land and the people in Dukuduku have undergone significant changes. What is apparent today is that the people of Dukuduku–some of whom can claim to have ancestral connection to the land–do not have a coherent identity in relation to each other or to the land itself. We argue, drawing on Douglas’ cultural theory, that... (More)

This article explores the use of identity politics in conflicts that pertain to land, land restitution and traditional authority in northern KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, and more specifically the Dukuduku area. Under the influence of past geographic displacements, ongoing neoliberal transformations and the transition to democracy under the post-apartheid government, not least including contested traditional authority, the land and the people in Dukuduku have undergone significant changes. What is apparent today is that the people of Dukuduku–some of whom can claim to have ancestral connection to the land–do not have a coherent identity in relation to each other or to the land itself. We argue, drawing on Douglas’ cultural theory, that this situation largely pertains to the persistence of dissenting and fatalistic voices within the community and the ongoing (re)production of local identities. Since narratives of identity are being reproduced through local cultural ecotourism ventures while relying on fatalistic and dissenting tendencies, these tendencies should not be seen to cohere in a realm outside processes of dominant entrepreneurial development in contemporary South Africa. We conclude that, given the durability of fatalism and dissidence, there is a need for anybody with an interest in the area to take them continually into consideration.

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author
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
epub
subject
keywords
conservation, cultural theory, identity politics, land reform, land restitution, neoliberalisation, South Africa
in
Journal of Southern African Studies
external identifiers
  • scopus:85066976859
ISSN
0305-7070
DOI
10.1080/03057070.2019.1619429
language
English
LU publication?
no
id
3fa72835-929e-4d4d-9f29-c9de77655900
date added to LUP
2019-07-03 08:33:37
date last changed
2019-07-16 04:13:59
@article{3fa72835-929e-4d4d-9f29-c9de77655900,
  abstract     = {<p>This article explores the use of identity politics in conflicts that pertain to land, land restitution and traditional authority in northern KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, and more specifically the Dukuduku area. Under the influence of past geographic displacements, ongoing neoliberal transformations and the transition to democracy under the post-apartheid government, not least including contested traditional authority, the land and the people in Dukuduku have undergone significant changes. What is apparent today is that the people of Dukuduku–some of whom can claim to have ancestral connection to the land–do not have a coherent identity in relation to each other or to the land itself. We argue, drawing on Douglas’ cultural theory, that this situation largely pertains to the persistence of dissenting and fatalistic voices within the community and the ongoing (re)production of local identities. Since narratives of identity are being reproduced through local cultural ecotourism ventures while relying on fatalistic and dissenting tendencies, these tendencies should not be seen to cohere in a realm outside processes of dominant entrepreneurial development in contemporary South Africa. We conclude that, given the durability of fatalism and dissidence, there is a need for anybody with an interest in the area to take them continually into consideration.</p>},
  author       = {Aardenburg, Elizabeth and Nel, Adrian},
  issn         = {0305-7070},
  keyword      = {conservation,cultural theory,identity politics,land reform,land restitution,neoliberalisation,South Africa},
  language     = {eng},
  series       = {Journal of Southern African Studies},
  title        = {Fatalism and Dissidence in Dukuduku, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa : Ongoing Contestations Over Land, Resources and Identities},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03057070.2019.1619429},
  year         = {2019},
}