Afrikaans community welcomes book depicting its ‘rise and demise’

SABC News Book - Afrikaans community welcomes book depicting its ‘rise and demise’

The Afrikaans community in Stellenbosch has welcomed the book, “The Rise and Demise of the Afrikaners”, written by author Hermann Giliomee.

Giliomee says the Afrikaans speaking population could be reduced to below 2% by 2040 in the Western Cape.

Giliomee launched his new book in Stellenbosch on Wednesday night. In the book, the acclaimed historian and author explains the dramatic ascent and possible demise of a small minority group that dominated 20th-century South Africa.

He says the Afrikaners are unique in the world in that they successfully mobilised ethnic entrepreneurship without state assistance, controlled the government for almost 50 years and then yielded power without military defeat.

One person attending the book launch says, “I think the interesting question is how the Afrikaners survived from being the oppressed to becoming the oppressor and I think the other racial groups should be interested in using what the Afrikaners did initially as a tool for their own upliftment.”

Another says, “I think it’s also important to understand the history of South Africa and to understand what went wrong.”

“There is still much anger about the history but I think people want to move forward but there are these obstacles that hinder them from moving forward and I think that needs to be addressed in a way,” added another attendee.

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