The archive can be seen as one realisation of the original vision and dream of the San of the southern Kalahari. From the very beginning of their land claim, elders expressed their wish that the ǂKhomani San be known, understood, and thus given their rights to their lands and heritage. In this online archive are the stories they told, the films they helped to make, the maps they created from their knowledge, and the languages they have wished to defend and celebrate. Alive despite the history, and alive for everyone to see, understand and take pride in.
But we are still seeking information. Those who visit this site are urged to help us complete and correct the history as it is presented here. Sometimes we are not sure about the name of a person in an old photograph, or there is more information that we do not know about; there may be stories that have been forgotten or left out of this archive.
Behind the archive
Besides the support of community elders and many individuals, the project’s success is owed to the South African San Institute (SASI), which represented the ǂKhomani San of the southern Kalahari through this period, in partnership with Open Channels, the UK charity that raised funds and provided some expertise, and Strata 360, the map-making NGO in Canada. Roger Chennells, as legal counsel for the ǂKhomani San, gave support and advice whenever this was needed and finally University of Cape Town Special Collections and the University of Cape Town for building and making accessible this invaluable resource.
Robert Gavron Charitable Trust
The Cairns Charitable Trust – No 2 Settlement
The David & Elaine Potter Foundation