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Greater South Africa— ‘Cape Town to the Equator’?: South-West Africa, Mozambique and the North, 1910–39

  • Ronald Hyam

Abstract

The vision of a Greater South Africa was certainly not limited to Southern Rhodesia and the three High Commission Territories, although these were obvious and concrete objectives. Inheriting expansionist concepts of security and opportunity from local heroes as well as from officers of the British government — from Kruger and Rhodes as from Milner and Selborne—, the Union from the beginning had designs on German South-West Africa, and took up the legacy of the old Transvaal’s urge to the sea, particularly in the direction of Delagoa Bay and its port, Lourenço Marques. Smuts, an arch-expansionist, explicitly identified himself with Rhodes, claiming in 1929 that his whole working life since the Anglo-Boer War had been continuously occupied with the same sort of questions as had governed the career of Rhodes, most notably ‘the progress of European civilisation on the African continent’. From this it was but a short step to lay claim also to be the disciple of Livingstone, promoting in the area associated with Livingstone the civilising mission of Christianity and commerce.1 Smuts looked beyond the Union to an economic and political hegemony in the north, extending far beyond the frontiers of South Africa into equatorial regions, which nature had linked to the south by what he called a ‘broad backbone’ of mountainous plateau.2

Keywords

British Government South African Government High Commission Native Policy Expansionist Concept 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Ronald Hyam 1972

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  • Ronald Hyam

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