Use of the Term
In Réunion, contrary to other countries or regions of the south-west of the Indian Ocean, the term is in common use. It means "any individual whose phenotype goes back more or less to African and slave Malagasy origins, as described by the sociologist Paul Mayoka in his essay "The image of the cafre". The term is also used to mean ethnic groups of Southeast African origin from where slaves came.
The ancestors of the cafres were slaves brought from Africa and Madagascar to work the sugar plantations; these were the first slaves to be introduced to the Mascarene Islands. The slaves came from Mozambique, Guinea, Senegal and Madagascar. Most trace their roots to Madagascar and East Africa (Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia) although some descended from runaways from European pirate ships.
The cafres are mostly Christian.
- Medea, Laurent (2002). "Creolisation and Globalisation in a Neo-Colonial Context: the Case of Réunion". Social Identities 8 (1): 125–141. doi:10.1080/13504630220132053.
- Yu-Sion, Live (July–August 2003), "Illusion identitaire et métissage culturel chez les "Sinoi" de la Réunion", Perspectives chinoises (78), ISSN 1021-9013, retrieved 2008-11-01
- Mayoka, Paul (1997). L'image du Cafre. Saint-Denis: Publications Hibiscus. pp. 12–13. ISBN 2-912266-00-9.
- see also: the article CAFRE, cafrine of the lexicon which appears in Beniamino, Michel (1996). Le français de La Réunion. Vanves: EDICEF. ISBN 2-84129-240-1.
- Esther, Martine. Les Damnés des tropiques. Editions Publibook. p. 105. ISBN 978-2-7483-4222-2. Retrieved 2009-12-18.
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