carel boshoff III


This is one of the more readable pieces I’ve read on the recent passing of Professor Carel Boshoff, the visionary Afrikaner nationalist.

Paradox trailed Carel Boshoff through his whole life. Before he devoted himself to building an all-white paradise, he worked for three years as a missionary in Soweto, the vast black labor reserve south of Johannesburg. Only some 2 or 3 percent of his neighborhood’s residents were Christians then, he told me when I interviewed him in Orania a year and a half ago. He longed to share with the rest the light of divinity.

But at the same time, through the 1980s, Boshoff — who married Verwoerd’s daughter Anna — was rising through the ranks of the conservative Afrikaner intelligentsia. This group worried about the preservation of the Afrikaner language and traditions after the anticipated end of white rule, as well as whites’ physical safety. Steeped in the writings of communitarian philosophers and early Zionists, Boshoff began to float the idea of a much tinier Afrikaner state, one which whites dominated not by forcibly subduing a black majority but by barring blacks altogether. In 1990, his dream became a reality when an old mining town in the country’s sparsely populated northwest went onto the auction block. Boshoff and a crew of supporters bought the whole thing, requiring the handful of blacks who lived there to leave. (Boshoff didn’t apologize for the relocations: “When you buy a used car,” he told a reporter, “you don’t buy the car’s occupants.”) He explained to the curious press that Orania was a “radical solution to a radical problem,” claimed 12,000 families had signed up to settle there, and predicted the number would expand exponentially.

From the pen of Eve Fairbanks, writing for Foreign Policy.

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