Creating a sport historical narrative through a 19th century ‘Afrikaans’ poem

  • Francois J. Cleophas
Keywords: 19th Century Wellington, South Africa, Afrikaans poetry, Coloured jockeys, Horseracing


19th century ‘Afrikaans’ poem, composed by Casparus Petrus Hoogenhout, was used as a case study on social and sport interactions between rural Afrikaners and non-white peasants in the Boland. It extends on previous work on the same poem. Essentially, the poem is a presentation of a 19th century Coloured farmworker, Jan Bantjies, who entered and won a horseracing event at the Green Point Common. Bantjies then squandered his winnings and succumbed to drunkenness. An historical narrative of horseracing in the Cape colony was reported. Throughout the text, racial stereotyping of the central figure, Jan Bantjies, was explored. However, no claim can be made to generalisations regarding racial attitudes in the 19th Century in the Boland, Western Cape, based on this poem.

Keywords: 19th Century Wellington, South Africa; Afrikaans poetry; Coloured jockeys; Horseracing


Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 0379-9069