The role of the political prophecy of the Boer “Nostradamus” in the formation of the ideology of the conservative right in South Africa

  • Mladen Stajić The Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology Faculty of Philosophy University of Belgrade
Keywords:
political prophecies, Siner Van Rensburg, divination, auspices, anthropology of time, social change, South Africa, apartheid, Boer, Afrikaners

Abstract

This article analyzes the influence of the prophet Siner Van Rensburg and later interpreters of his visions on creation of the Boer and Afrikaner national identity in the Republic of South Africa from the start of the 20th century until today. The work of the prophet and his disciples is viewed in the light of important historical events and contemporary political circumstances. Through the interpretation of the political instrumentalization of this prophecy, the mechanism of the making of and functioning of political foresight is demonstrated. This is also applicable to the opus of numerous other seers all over the world. A critical overview of important works of authors dealing with this issue is given, as well as a theoretical basis for planned future research. The primary role of the prophecy is, inthis paper, not identified as the divination of future events but as the ideological reinterpretation of the past and the present through the prism of determinism and facing social change in times of crisis, as well as their negation. Thus, the supposed prophecies become an acceptable place to express socially unacceptable attitudes and unrealized political wishes, goals and ambitions.

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Published
2014-12-08