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By Joan G. Fairweather

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Additional info for A Common Hunger: Land Rights in Canada And South Africa (Missing Voices Series)

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Similar stories are told about the reception of Europeans on Canada’s west coast. After Captain James Cook visited the west coast of North America in 778, his ship had scarcely any brass left on board, so eager were the Indians to acquire iron of any kind – and the sailors to part with it in exchange for furs. ²¹ Encouraged by the reception they received, British navigators continued to visit the western shores of North America in quest of the elusive Northwest Passage to India. North American Indians on both sides of the continent were generous with the strangers who visited their shores, evidently perceiving no threat from them.

We have nothing to pass on. In the old days we had to make a musical instrument and sing along to it. ¹⁸ The clearing of lands and languages has been experienced differently by South Africa’s black majority whose vernacular languages withstood the assault of colonization. But language – or rather the use or manipulation of language – has nevertheless played an important role in the relationship between white and black South Africans, especially during the apartheid era. Despite their overwhelming numerical presence, Africans were rendered “invisible” by their treatment as units of labour in whiteowned mines, farms and factories.

Over the years, the Zulus lost their former tradition of democratic control over royal prerogatives to become subjects of a centralized royal despotism. This was the essential difference between the two otherwise similar nations upon whom the burden of resistance to white penetration of the South African interior was to fall. 26 a common hunger ◉ Part One : Dispossesion the first peoples of north america How North American Indians first arrived on the continent and how long they have been here remains open to speculation.

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