Fresh off the press: Coloured: How classification became culture by Tessa Dooms and Lynsey Ebony Chutel

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Title: Coloured: How classification became culture
Authors:
Tessa Dooms and Lynsey Ebony Chutel
Publisher: Jonathan Ball Publishers SA (2023)
ISBN: 9781776191499

Coloured as an ethnicity and racial demographic is intertwined in the creation of the South Africa we have today. Yet often, Coloured communities are disdained as people with no clear heritage or culture — ‘not being black enough or white enough.’

Coloured challenges this notion and presents a different angle to that narrative.

It delves into the history of Coloured people as descendants of indigenous Africans and a people whose identity was shaped by colonisation, slavery, and the racial political hierarchy it created.

Although rooted in a difficult history, this book is also about the culture that Coloured communities have created for themselves through food, music, and shared lived experiences in communities such as Eldorado Park, Eersterus, and Wentworth. Coloured culture is an act of defiance and resilience.

Coloured is a reflection on, and celebration of Coloured identities as lived experiences. It is a call to Coloured communities to reclaim their identity and an invitation to understand the history and place of Coloured people in the making of South Africa’s future.

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