With the help of archival photographs, Jacob Dlamini’s new book Safari Nation sheds light on how and why Africa’s national parks – often derided by scholars as colonial impositions – survived the end of white rule on the continent. What follows is an extract from the book

Exploring South African ideas of nature and nationality

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To understand the histories of black presence in the Kruger National Park, one must first understand the history of black mobility, specifically tourism, in colonial South Africa.

In fact, there was a tradition of independent modern black travel going back at least to the start of the twentieth century. As early as 1902, Koranta ea Becoana, a newspaper founded by Sol Plaatje in 1901, was reporting on excursions to the countryside and other parts of the country...

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