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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Reports from 'Beyond the Line': The Accumulation of Knowledge of Kavango and its People by the German Colonial Administration, 1891-1911
Author:Eckl, Andreas
Periodical:Journal of Namibian Studies
Geographic term:Namibia
Subjects:economic conditions
colonial administration
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
History and Exploration
Abstract:This paper explores the accumulation of knowledge of the Kavango region and its peoples in northern Namibia by analysing twenty reports on German expeditions to the area undertaken between 1891 and 1911. The article intends to determine the internal logic of the accumulation of knowledge by German officials as part of the deconstruction of colonial discourse. Kavango became a matter of interest for the colonial administration only at a late stage. The region was never part of the so-called police zone ('Polizeizone') which had been demarcated by what later became known as the 'Red Line'- hence it has to be considered as a territory 'beyond the line' at that time, and in some respects it still is today. The article shows that all reports by German officials on the region paid tribute to the fact that Kavango was a region which still had to be brought under control, but actually never was. As a result, the accumulation of knowledge was mostly limited to the economic value of the region while interest in the Kavango peoples themselves remained weak. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract, edited]