Gender and the Making of a South African Bantustan
A Social History of the Ciskei, 1945-1958
How did an odd assortment of often unconnected spaces become Ciskei in the 1940s and 1950s?
The author uses the prism of gender to displace the universal male subject of mainstream South African history, moving between the social space of families and the political space of the apartheid state.
"... she weaves a rich social history which affords fresh insights through the lens of gender feminist historiography: it is deserving of a close read. -" Jennifer Robinson, THE ENGLISH HISTORICAL REVIEW
"Anne Mager's book represents the timely conjunction of the importance of gender analyses of history and social process, to the political and economic processes involved in the creation of Ciskei, South Africa's last official homeland. It is a welcome addition to the rich historiography of the region, providing an alternative approach to the history ... . It also complements the anthropology of the region ... . The strength of Mager's book is that it touches on a whole range of historical issues but in a way that destabilises the narrative and the normalising tendencies of more mainstream history. The extensive use of archival and oral sources also makes it one of the better-researched pieces available on South African regional history. As part anthropology, part historical discussion it challenges the pattern of conventional histories of the region by emphasising gender and moving away from a focus on either elite political mobilisation or peasant resistance. It is an essential read for anyone interested in earlier or contemporary or Eastern Cape History. -" Natasha Erlank, SOUTH AFRICAN HISTORICAL JOURNAL