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    The Prince and Afrikaners: the royal visit of 1925

    Sapire, Hilary (2018) The Prince and Afrikaners: the royal visit of 1925. Royal Studies Journal 5 (1), pp. 107-125. ISSN 2057-6730.

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    Abstract

    For three months in 1925, Prince Edward (Prince of Wales) conducted an extensive tour through the Union of South Africa. Whilst royal visits to dominions and colonial dependencies in the interwar years were promoted by the British government as a means of cohering the empire at crucial moments of dominion devolution, a special purpose of the South African royal progresses was to effect a reconciliation between the ruling white ‘races’ (whites of British descent and Afrikaners) and reconcile Afrikaners to the imperial tie. This article explores the complex and unexpected ways in which Afrikaners engaged with the young ‘ambassador of empire’ at the midpoint of a tumultuous decade in South African politics. Originally proposed by the renowned South African politician and imperial statesman, Jan Smuts, the tour took place when government was led by Afrikaner nationalists and included avowed republicans. . Notwithstanding lingering resentments over the South African War (1899 – 1902) and Boer rebellion (1914 -15), the Prince’s visit was reckoned a success in softening anti-British prejudices of Afrikaners, boosting English-speakers’ morale, and saving South Africa for the Empire. Probing beneath breathless newspaper narratives of dour Afrikaners charmed into loyalty by a glamorous Prince, this chapter explains the apparent volte-face in Afrikaner elite and popular attitudes. Unlike the iconic royal visit of 1947 when nationalist dissent was openly expressed, discontents in 1925 were sublimated or masked by gestures of deference and satire. The article offers alternative perspectives on a pivotal decade in the fashioning of modern monarchy and on Afrikaner cultural politics

    Metadata

    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Prince of Wales, royal visit, monarchy, Afrikaners, South Africa
    School: School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy > History, Classics and Archaeology
    Depositing User: Hilary Sapire
    Date Deposited: 01 Mar 2018 07:42
    Last Modified: 13 Jun 2021 09:01
    URI: https://eprints.bbk.ac.uk/id/eprint/21359

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