At Home with Apartheid: The Hidden Landscapes of Domestic Service in Johannesburg Rebecca Ginsburg

ISBN: 9780813931647

Published:

Hardcover

229 pages


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At Home with Apartheid: The Hidden Landscapes of Domestic Service in Johannesburg  by  Rebecca Ginsburg

At Home with Apartheid: The Hidden Landscapes of Domestic Service in Johannesburg by Rebecca Ginsburg
| Hardcover | PDF, EPUB, FB2, DjVu, AUDIO, mp3, ZIP | 229 pages | ISBN: 9780813931647 | 5.69 Mb

Despite their peaceful, bucolic appearance, the tree-linedstreets of South African suburbia were no refuge from the racial tensions andindignities of apartheids most repressive years. In At Home withApartheid, Rebecca Ginsburg provides anMoreDespite their peaceful, bucolic appearance, the tree-linedstreets of South African suburbia were no refuge from the racial tensions andindignities of apartheids most repressive years.

In At Home withApartheid, Rebecca Ginsburg provides an intimate examination ofthe cultural landscapes of Johannesburgs middle- and upper-middle-classneighborhoods during the height of apartheid (c. 1960-1975) and incorporates recentscholarship on gender, the home, and family.More subtly but noless significantly than factory floors, squatter camps, prisons, and courtrooms, thehomes of white South Africans were sites of important contests between whiteprivilege and black aspiration.

Subtle negotiations within the domestic spherebetween white, mostly female, householders and their black domestic workers, alsoprimarily women, played out over and around this space. These seemingly mundane, private conflicts were part of larger contemporary struggles between whites andblacks over territory and power.Ginsburg gives special attentionto the distinct social and racial geographies produced by the workers detachedliving quarters, designed by builders and architects as landscape complements to themain houses.

Ranch houses, Italianate villas, modernist cubes, and Victorianbungalows filled Johannesburgs suburbs. What distinguished these neighborhoods fromtheir precedents in the United States or the United Kingdom was the presence of theubiquitous back rooms and of the African women who inhabited them in these otherwiseexclusively white areas.The author conducted more thanseventy-five personal interviews for this book, an approach that sets it apart fromother architectural histories.

In addition to these oral accounts, Ginsburg drawsfrom plans, drawings, and onsite analysis of the physical properties themselves.While the issues addressed span the disciplines of South African and architecturalhistory, feminist studies, material culture studies, and psychology, the booksstrong narrative, powerful oral histories, and compelling subject matter bring theneighborhoods and residents it examines vividly to life.



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