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Studia Historiae Ecclesiasticae

On-line version ISSN 2412-4265
Print version ISSN 1017-0499


LANDMAN, Christina. The piety of German women in South Africa. Studia Hist. Ecc. [online]. 2014, vol.40, n.2, pp.119-129. ISSN 2412-4265.

The article analyses the piety prevalent in the four volumes of Unsere Frauen Erzählen which contain the stories of German women residing at Kroondal, a Hermannsburg mission near present day Rustenburg in the Northwest Province of South Africa. The focus is on the period between 1930 and 1990 when Nazism and apartheid reigned in Germany and South Africa. Firstly, the women's piety showed signs of being prescribed by nationalism. The women, most of whom were first generation German women bom on South African soil, supported Hitler and his ideas, aiding his war efforts and siding with racially conservative Afrikaans- speaking people by whom they were surrounded. Secondly, the women's piety was family-based, living the ideals of the perfect religious woman who supported her family, her church and her nation with her domestic skills. Thirdly, the piety of the women was theologically uninformed as women of the time were not exposed to theological training. However, as Lutherans who believed in the free will of believers, they expressed their piety differently from that of the Afrikaans-speaking women who accepted their fate as predestined.

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