Xhosa Beer Drinking Rituals

Xhosa Beer Drinking Rituals: Power, Practice And Performance In The South African Rural Periphery


The consumption of indigenous beer is a widespread and long-standing feature of many African societies, a practice of both historical and contemporary significance. Among the rural, Xhosa-speaking people of South Africa's Eastern Cape province, maize beer became increasingly important in the context of early twentieth century colonialism, and a range of new beer drinking rituals developed. This coincided with state neglect of black rural areas and with economic and demographic changes that led to the emergence of co-operative relations within neighbourhood groups as a vital element of homestead production.With the entrenchment of the apartheid regime from the late 1940s onward, the maintenance of a rural homestead, agricultural practices, and an agrarian lifestyle became one way to resist the injustices of apartheid and fuller incorporation into the wider society. In this respect, beer rituals became a crucial mechanism through which to develop and maintain rural social and economic relations, to inculcate the values that supported these, and to provide a viable though fragile view of the world that afforded an alternative to the disillusionment and suffering associated with black urban areas. Using an anthropological analysis based on a combination of Bourdieu's practice theory with the anthropology of performance, this book demonstrates the way beer drinking rituals worked towards these aims, the various types of rituals that developed, and how they sought to instill a rural Xhosa habitus in the face of almost overwhelming odds.



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  • Format: Paperback
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  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Carolina Academic Pr
  • ISBN-13: 9780890890219
  • ISBN: 0890890218
  • Publication Year: 2005
  • Edition: 1
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HPB condition ratings
  • New: Item is brand new, unused and unmarked, in flawless condition.
  • Fine/Like New (F): No defects, little usage. May show remainder marks. Older books may show minor flaws.
  • Very Good (VG): Shows some signs of wear and is no longer fresh. Attractive. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Good (G): Average used book with all pages present. Possible loose bindings, highlighting, cocked spine or torn dust jackets. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Fair (FR): Obviously well-worn, but no text pages missing. May be without endpapers or title page. Markings do not interfere with readability. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Poor (P): All text is legible but may be soiled and have binding defects. Reading copies and binding copies fall into this category. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
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