Griqua

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The Griqua race

The so-called Griqua race has a mixed-race lineage that comprises indigenous, slave and European ancestry. They were initially known as "Bastard Hottentots" , but in 1813 chose the name Griqua due to the close ties many of them had with a Khoi-Khoi tribe known as the Grigrigua.

(A separate group, known as the Basters or Rhehoboth Basters would later migrate to an settle in Namibia[1].)

The Griquas lived in the Western Cape and to this day celebrate May 11 as Ratelgat-Day – also known as Griqua Volk-Day – in honour of one of their leaders Andrew Abraham Stockenström who was born on this day in 1923. Stockenström’s birthday was chosen because of the sacrifices he endured to ensure that the Griqua attain land ownership rights of the Ratelgat farm which is now a space that offers insight into Griqua and Khoi-San culture and traditions.

Sarah (Saartjie) Baartman

A famous Khoi-Khoi icon, Sarah Baartman[2], has been the subject of a number of works of art, including * plays and performance. She has had her dignity restored in death when her remains were returned from Europe and buried in the Eastern Cape on August 9 2002. This was only achieved after the Griqua people launched a campaign in 1995 to get back her remains.

Among the plays based on her life have been:

Kom terug, Saartjie (“Come back Saartjie”) by Hans Pienaar (2005), Cargo: Precious by Sylvaine Strike (2014).

Griqua history and culture on stage

More general works include:


Children of the Mist, which opened at the Artscape Theatre Centre on on September 4, 2010, focused on Griqua history and traditions.


Cultural forms and their preservationj

Rieldans

Clearly related to and possibly based on the Scottish and Irish reel dance traditions, the Riel or Rieldans is a traditional dance of the Griqua, dating from the 19th century or even earlier. Also known among other peoples in the Western Cape region, including Afrikaners. ??

Ikhapara dance

The Ikhapara dance done by the Khoi Khoi people is one of the oldest dance forms of indigenous South Africa. Traditionally performed as a circle trance dance around a fire, the Ikhapara dance is still performed until this day. Its modern version has elements of colonialism as the accompanying instrumentation includes guitar and violin, and the outfits adorning the dances are commonly known as ‘working class clothes’.done by the Khoi Khoi people is one of the oldest dance forms of indigenous South Africa. Traditionally performed as a circle trance dance around a fire, the Ikhapara dance is still performed until this day. Its modern version has elements of colonialism as the accompanying instrumentation includes guitar and violin, and the outfits adorning the dances are commonly known as ‘working class clothes’.


Griqua Ratelgat Development Trust

Valerie Mentoor and Jan Joseph of the Griqua Ratelgat Development Trust say their vision took form in 2003 when the Trust started eco-cultural and historical tourism to enlighten others about the Griqua. “One of our aims was that through this project our people would gain back the culture that they lost because of colonisation and apartheid,” they explained of their initiatives.

Sources

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Griqua_people

https://www.sahistory.org.za/article/griqua

https://www.britannica.com/topic/Griqua

http://www.griquaroyalhouse.com/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baster

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