: Sampson (C.) & Neville (D.)

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325pp., b/w & colour illus., maps, paperback, Occasional publications of the KwaZulu-Natal Museum, Number 4, Pietermaritzburg, 2021


"A beautifully illustrated companion volume to The World of the Seekoei River Bushmen, published in 2018. It thoroughly documents the history of the Seekoei valley at a crucial moment in the development of the Cape Colony and the expansion of European settlement into the interior of Southern Africa. I do not think that there is, or will likely ever be, anything of this comprehensiveness on record anywhere else in southern Africa as regards the opportunity to integrate a rich series of historical observations with archaeological and ethnographic material." Peter Mitchell, University of Oxford

"This book chronicles not only the lives of Seekoei River Bushmen, but also white settlers on their loan farms. It is beautifully written, but contains spine-chilling accounts of retribution accorded to Bushmen communities for the stock thefts and farm attacks that sometimes left farm workers dead. The elegant prose is occasionally spiced with a pinch of dry humour, but there is not much to make one smile either in the accounts of the treatment of Bushmen and expropriation of their land, or in accounts of hardships that were endured by the early white settlers. The narrative follows a timeline developed by the records of administrators, missionaries, travellers and adventurers, which allows the complex relationships to unfold in the context of South Africa's political and social history." Lyn Wadley, University of the Witwatersrand

Garth Sampson is Program Professor in the Anthropology Department, Texas State University at San Marcos. He lives in Cape Town.

Dennis Neville is a freelance archaeologist and runs a non-profit project from Johannesburg for youth at risk.