The long way to independence on a Namibian farm
328 p. • 2020 • ISBN 978-99945-76-68-5 • 120 x 190 mm • Namibia Scientific Society/Kuiseb Publishers
In this biographical narrative, Erika von Wietersheim takes us back to the time between 1976 and Namibia’s independence in March 1990. It is the story of a twofold emancipation: After her studies at the rather liberal University of Cape Town, the young Namibian returns to her motherland to live with her husband Anton on the farm of her parents-in-law. There, she is confronted with traditional apartheid structures and relationships. What can she do to change the existing situation and contribute to a more just society for the people on the farm and in the country? One answer is education. She establishes a school on the farm – initially without any outside help and against official regulations. In this way, she comes into living contact with Namibian children, their parents and their culture and with time with important people of Namibia’ independence movements like Hendrik Witbooi, Hage Geingob, and Anton Lubowski.
The author artfully interweaves the story of her life on the farm with political backgrounds and developments, gives us insight into the culture of the local Nama people, describes the ups and downs of everyday life on a farm and demonstrates that, also among white Namibians, there were serious endeavours to make Namibia a more just and self-determined society.
Also available in German.