by Freddy Khunou
A detailed account of the rich history and resilience of the Bakwena ba Mogopa, one of the most important traditional communities in South Africa.
This seminal and lucid work depicts the scope of social, political and economic change of the community from its earliest beginnings as the Kwena tribe migrating from East Africa to southern Africa, the birth of the tribe as a distinct and independent lineage in the 1600s, the impact of land dispossession of the Boer settlers as they advanced from the Cape Colony to the interior, the impact of Christianity, the racist and oppressive attitudes and policies of colonial governments, through to the hardships endured under the Union government and apartheid.
Mountains Of Spirit captures the role that the traditional leaders of the Bakwena ba Mogopa played in shaping the community and responding to challenges of the modern economy and constitutional democracy of South Africa. It is an important study of the tribal structures, the social, cultural and traditional practices, and the questions of land, minerals and mining rights of the Bakwena ba Mogopa.
A story spanning migrations, wars, land dispossession and restitution, intra-tribal rivalry, unrest, cultural disintegration, forced removals, pain and suffering and reintegration, Mountains Of Spirit reclaims the history of a people and evinces the fighting spirit and resilience of a resourceful community against immense odds.