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Thread: Do You Consider Yourselves "African"?

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    Do You Consider Yourselves "African"?

    Would you use "African" as an adjective to describe yourselves and your Afrikaner/Boer heritage, or do you find it too ambiguous, or offensive?


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    Quote Originally Posted by Dagna View Post
    Would you use "African" as an adjective to describe yourselves and your Afrikaner/Boer heritage, or do you find it too ambiguous, or offensive?
    I would not. I think it would too easily be ambiguous, yes, but my primary reason would be that I do not want to use a label which has no connection to Europe.

    I believe there are Boers/Afrikaners who would call themselves "African" without Afrophilic intentions, though. I've read of Afrikaners who label us as "Africa's only indigenous white tribe", and the reasoning behind it is that we've been a culture distinct from any other continent long enough to be named us such, but I think it does injustice to our European heritage. I can't help suspecting that such lingual dissociation from our European origins is due to guilt-engineering and fears that admitting we are not native to this continent would justify the notion that we do not belong in South Africa, as most of the natives undoubtedly believe.

    It's noteworthy to mention we don't have exactly the same dilemma in terminology in Afrikaans. Afrikaner stems from the Dutch word for "African", so in effect we're calling ourselves "African" without the association of everything else which is African. Much like the Anglo-Americans claimed the word American in their language as referring to them, and devising the terms Native-American or American-Indian for the natives, the Dutch settlers claimed the word for African in their language to refer to themselves also, and similarly creating special terms for the natives. They could use geographically derived terminology to distinguish themselves from the Fatherland Dutch whilst keeping the association to their European heritage, because their use of "African" referred only to themselves, and the use persisted until it became our ethnic defining term today.

    (To make the distinction, the technically correct term in Afrikaans for Africans is "Afrikane", but the term is used so little that most writers defer from using it under the assumption that too many Afrikaners will confuse it with themselves, and speak of blacks or Bantus instead.)

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    Stormraaf explains it well. "African" has to much of a loaded connotation to it - An Africanist one. And "Africanism" isn't even an "African" ideology. Yes "African" isn't even a term from the Black languages. It's something the Romans introduced. And for them "Africans" were actually White people (North Africa)...

    Of course we are also defined by our Germanic heritage as opposed to the Bantuid heritage of Blacks in the Region.
    "And God proclaims as a first principle to the rulers, and above all else, that there is nothing which they should so anxiously guard, or of which they are to be such good guardians, as of the purity of the race. They should observe what elements mingle in their offspring;..." Plato Politeia

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dagna View Post
    Would you use "African" as an adjective to describe yourselves and your Afrikaner/Boer heritage, or do you find it too ambiguous, or offensive?
    I use "African" occasionally for humourous purposes or to annoy and bait people during confrontations but in all seriousness I wouldn't describe myself as being "African" as the word (for me) describes a person of the black race.

    I'm fairly comfortable with "Afrikaans" and / or "Afrikaner", sometimes I'll use "Boer".

    Yes I know there have been debates about "Afrikaner" vs "Boer" where certain people have attached certain meanings to them ie that "Afrikaners are liberal" while "Boers are the true patriots" but those definitions are arbitrary, not agreed upon and aren't in general use.

    There is no way that I'd use the term "Afrikaanses". This one appears to be some kind of new and fluffy "all-inclusive" term for pretty much anybody who speaks the Afrikaans language and its use attempts to unite them all into one happy rainbownation family. Thanks, but no thanks!

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    In all honesty, most Afrikaners will be offended if they are referred to as african. African is reserved for the use when referring to black people in afrika, and to distinguish between black Americans and white Americans. If you look at the Afrikaner people in Australia and elsewhere in the world, they do not label themselves as Afrikaner Australians etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rooikat View Post
    In all honesty, most Afrikaners will be offended if they are referred to as african. African is reserved for the use when referring to black people in afrika, and to distinguish between black Americans and white Americans. If you look at the Afrikaner people in Australia and elsewhere in the world, they do not label themselves as Afrikaner Australians etc.
    Actually the term "African" was first used for White people. The Romans were talking about "Africa-" when referring to the lands South of the Meditareneans Sea.

    Blacks basically adopted this name after the Second World War and ursurped it as kind of a trademark for Black people. Ironically the intellectual movement that did do this was a creation of White people initiated via Blacks that studied at European and American Universities and were influenced by mainly Marxist students who resented White Heritage, Western Culture and last but not least "Capitalism".
    "And God proclaims as a first principle to the rulers, and above all else, that there is nothing which they should so anxiously guard, or of which they are to be such good guardians, as of the purity of the race. They should observe what elements mingle in their offspring;..." Plato Politeia

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    I consider myself a White African. African is about my location, our continent, like someone in the USA is American or someone in England is European.

    I don't consider African an insulting word. Afrikaners are African (it's in the name), and so are the Blacks. African is not a Black-only word and it's not about colour. But it is not specific. If you say you are European, your ethnicity is still unclear, so you must say you are English or German or whatever your ethnicity is. I am an African of English ancestry, if anyone asks.

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