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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Bantu authorities and betterment in Natal: the ambiguous responses of chiefs and regents, 1955-1970
Author:Kelly, Jill E.ISNI
Periodical:Journal of Southern African Studies (ISSN 1465-3893)
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:traditional rulers
political history
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/03057070.2015.1012917
Abstract:While the Maphumulo and Nyavu chiefs, regents, and izinduna at Table Mountain (Pietermaritzburg, Natal, South Africa) agreed to establish bantu authorities in early 1955, they and their successors did little thereafter to suggest continued support for the apartheid system of African administration. In examining the actions of these apartheid-era traditional leaders apartheid needs to be unpacked, as does the chiefdoms' internal politics that influenced the actions of traditional leaders. Rural opposition to the bantu authorities system included battles against collaborative chiefs, against the traditional authority system itself, and in support of traditional authorities. At Table Mountain, the people attacked symbols of betterment and the bantu authorities system, making clear to their leaders that co-operation with these policies would not be tolerated. This examination of the Nyavu and Maphumulo traditional leaders' complex engagement with the bantu authorities system shows how traditional leaders navigated pressure to co-operate from apartheid officials, the desires of their diverse followers, and the country-wide resistance to bantu authorities and betterment schemes. The actions of these four chiefs and particularly vulnerable regents show a generational divide in responses, with the elder leaders and regents more likely to tread cautiously in their interactions with apartheid officials. The leaders' lack of enthusiasm for the bantu authorities system forced officials in the Native Affairs and Bantu Administration departments not only to take on responsibility for the implementation of projects and budgets, but to craft incentives and disciplinary measures in efforts to co-opt the traditional leadership. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract, edited]