Answer to Question #204952 in History for Mbali

Question #204952

Critically examine the impact of the great trek on different southern african societies during the first half or the 19 th century

Expert's answer

The Great Trek was a key event in the history of South Africa, comparable with events such as the British conquest of the Cape Colony in 1806 and the transfer of political power to the black majority in 1994.

From the perspective of the history of the Afrikaners there were various negative consequences. As a result of the Trek, the Afrikaners remained politically divided for many years. Furthermore, the Trek resulted in the cultural and economic isolation of the Boers. The Great Trek increased the conflicts between the Boers and indigenous tribes, but, on the other hand stimulated trade between black and white groups.

During the period between approximately 1900 and 1980 many Afrikaans- speaking historians were strongly influenced by Afrikaner nationalism. They linked the Great Trek to the birth of the Afrikaner nation. Some historians, such as G S Preller and C Beyers, saw the Voortrekkers as people who were already conscious of their identity as a nation and wanted to become free of British dominance. 

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