Extended coloured family with roots in Cape Town, Kimberley and Pretoria.
(In South Africa only, 2015)
|Regions with significant populations|
|South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Lesotho|
|Afrikaans, South African English|
|Christian (80%), Muslim (5%)|
|Related ethnic groups|
|Afrikaners, Khoikhoi, Basters, Xhosa, Cape Malay, Indian South Africans|
In Southern Africa, Cape Coloureds (Afrikaans: Kaapse Kleurling) are an ethnic group composed primarily of persons of mixed race. Although Cape Coloureds form a minority group within South Africa, they are the predominant population group in the Western Cape.
They are generally bilingual, speaking Afrikaans and English, though some speak only one of these. Some Cape Coloureds may code switch, speaking a patois of Afrikaans and English called Kaapse Afrikaans also known as Cape Slang (Capy) or "Kombuis Afrikaans", meaning Kitchen Afrikaans. Cape Coloureds were defined under the apartheid regime as a subset of the larger Coloured race group.
At least one genetic study indicates that Cape Coloureds have an ancestry consisting of the following ethnic groups:
- Khoisan: (32–43%)
- Bantu-speaking Africans: (20–36%)
- Ethnic groups in Europe: (21–28%)
- Asian peoples: (9–11%)
Origin and history
The Cape Coloureds are a heterogeneous South African ethnic group, with diverse ancestral links. Ancestry may include European colonizers, indigenous Khoisan and Xhosa people, and slaves imported from the Dutch East Indies (or a combination of all). People from India and the islands within the Indian Ocean region were also taken to the Cape and sold into slavery by the Dutch settlers. The Indian slaves were almost invariably given Christian names but their places of origin were indicated in the records of sales and other documents so that it is possible to get an idea of the ratio of slaves from different regions. These slaves were, however, dispersed and lost their Indian cultural identity over the course of time. Slaves of Malay and other ancestry were brought from India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Madagascar, and Mozambique. This diverse assortment of people was subsequently classified as a single group under the Apartheid regime.
Under Apartheid, under the Population Registration Act as amended, the term Cape Coloured referred to a subset of Coloured South Africans, with subjective criteria having been used by the bureaucracy to determine whether a person was a Cape Coloured, or belonged to one of a number of other related subgroups such as the "Cape Malays", or "Other Coloureds".
Cape Coloureds in the media
A group of Cape Coloureds were interviewed in the documentary series Ross Kemp on Gangs. One of the gang members who participated in the interview mentioned that black South Africans have been the main beneficiaries of South African social promotion initiatives while the Cape Coloureds have been further marginalised.
The award-winning film I'm Not Black, I'm Coloured - Identity Crisis at the Cape of Good Hope (Monde World Films, 2009 USA release) is one of the first historical documentary films to explore the legacy of Apartheid through the viewpoint of the Cape Coloured community, including interviews with elders, pastors, members of Parliament, students and everyday people struggling to find their identity in the new South Africa.
The term "coloured" is currently treated as a neutral description in Southern Africa, classifying people of mixed race ancestry. Since 1994, at the beginning of "The new South Africa", the term Cape Coloured became a badge of honor to this group of people.
Once used in the Western countries as well, especially so in North America, the term has shifted in meaning and is now regarded as derogatory in the Western World; a newly-coined term "person of color" has since become common and preferred by the members of the community and the general populace. This term tends to mean any non-white person, as opposed to a mixed-race person, where the term "multiracial" is used. "Coloured" may also be seen as offensive in some other western countries, such as Britain.
- Tony Ehrenreich, South African trades unionist.
- Trevor Manuel, former Finance Minister, currently Head of the National Planning Commission of South Africa.
- Patricia de Lille, former PAC, then Independent Democrats leader, currently Democratic Alliance mayor of Cape Town.
- Gerald Morkel, the former Premier of the Western Cape.
- Dan Plato, Western Cape Community Safety Minister.
- Percy Sonn, former president of the International Cricket Council.
- Adam Small, political activist, poet and writer.
- Allan Boesak (Political activist & Cleric).
- Dulcie September, Political activist.
- Neville Alexander, Political activist, educationalist & lecturer.
- Zainunnisa Gool, South African Political activist & representative on the Cape Town City Council.
- Alex La Guma, South African novelist & leader of the South African Coloured People's Organisation
Artists and writers
- Athol Williams, poet, writer, scholar, social philosopher
- AKA, hip hop recording artist
- Selwyn Milborrow, poet, writer, journalist
- Garth Erasmus, artist
- Tyrone Appollis, academic
- Willie Bester
- Peter Clarke
- Mustafa Maluka
- Tracey Rose
- Adam Small, writer
- Peter Abrahams, writer
- Robin Rhode
- James Matthews, writer
- Oliver Hermanus, writer, Director
- Richard Moore Rive, writer
- Rozena Maart, writer
- Phillippa Yaa de Villiers, writer & performance artist
- Dennis Brutus, journalist, poet, activist
- Diana Ferrus, poet, writer & performance artist
- Arthur Nortje, poet
- Zoë Wicomb, writer
- Dr. Don Mattera
- Amy Kleinhans, former Miss South Africa 1992 and first non-white Miss South Africa.
- Jo-Ann Strauss, Miss South Africa 2000, media personality and business woman.
- Tansey Coetzee, Miss South Africa 2007
- Tatum Keshwar, Miss South Africa 2008
- Liesl Laurie, Miss South Africa 2015
- Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters, Miss South Africa 2017 and Miss Universe 2017
- Tamaryn Green, Miss South Africa 2018
- Kenny Solomon, South Africa's first chess grandmaster
- Shaun Abrahams, 800m runner
- Geraldine Pillay, 2004 Olympian, Commonwealth medallist
- Leigh Julius, 2004- 2008 Olympian
- Wayde van Niekerk, track & field sprinter, Olympic and World Champion, and World Record Holder
- Cornel Fredericks, track & field sprinter
- Paul Gorries, Sprinter
- Paul Adams
- Vincent Barnes
- Loots Bosman
- Basil D'Oliveira
- Damian D'Oliveira
- JP Duminy
- Herschelle Gibbs
- Omar Henry
- Garnett Kruger
- Charl Langeveldt
- Ashwell Prince
- Robin Peterson
- Wayne Parnell
- Henry Davids
- Roger Telemachus
- Alviro Petersen
- Vernon Philander
- Beuran Hendricks
- Reeza Hendricks
- Bryan Habana
- Breyton Paulse
- Adrian Jacobs
- Conrad Jantjes
- Ashwin Willemse
- Ricky Januarie
- Gio Aplon
- Bolla Conradie
- Peter de Villiers
- Chester Williams
- Ashley Johnson
- Earl Rose
- Juan de Jongh
- Elton Jantjies
- Lionel Mapoe
- Errol Tobias
- Cheslin Kolbe, Western Province & Stormers player
- Kurt Coleman, Western Province & Stormers player
- Dillyn Leyds, Western Province & Stormers player
- Cornal Hendricks
- Benni McCarthy
- Mark Williams
- Shaun Bartlett
- Andre Arendse
- Delron Buckley
- Quinton Fortune
- Lance Davids
- Nasief Morris
- Leroy Maluka
- Steven Pienaar
- Moeneeb Josephs
- Stanton Lewis
- Daylon Claasen
- AKA, hip hop recording artist
- Kim Engelbrecht, actress, Dominion, Isidingo, The Flash
- Kandyse McClure, actress, Battlestar Galactica (2004 TV series)
- Paxton Fielies
- Quanita Adams, actress
- Jonathan Butler, jazz musician.
- Trevor Jones, South African born film composer.
- Meryl Cassie, actress from the TV series The Tribe.
- Lesley-Ann Brandt, actress
- Jean Grae, hip hop artist.
- Marc Lottering, comedian.
- Jenny Powell, television presenter.
- Natalie Becker, actress
- Vincent Ebrahim, actor
- Vinette Ebrahim, actress
- Robbie Jansen, musician
- Paul Hanmer, pianist & composer
- Taliep Petersen, musician & director
- Abdullah Ibrahim, jazz pianist
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- Adhikari, Mohamed (2005). Not White Enough, Not Black Enough: Racial Identity in the South African Coloured Community. Ohio University Press. ISBN 978-0-89680-442-5.
- Boggenpoel, Jesmane (2018). My Blood Divides and Unites: Race, Identity, Reconciliation. Porcupine Press. ISBN 978-1-928455-28-8.
- Richards, Ruben Robert (2018). Bastaards Or Humans: The Unspoken Heritage of Coloured People. Indaba. ISBN 978-1-947599-06-2.
- Van Wyk, Chris (2006). Shirley, Goodness & Mercy: A Childhood in Africa. Picador. ISBN 978-0-330-44483-5.