Reinker, Caterina (2017). “Life on Sauerkraut Hill”. Representation and Practices of Freedom and Constriction among German Immigrants in Cape Town, South Africa. Masters thesis, Universität zu Köln.

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In social sciences, intercontinental migration is often seen as a phenomenon of South-North mobility or increasingly as a phenomenon of South-South mobility. In fact, the majority of intercontinental / interregional mobility is taking place between Africa and Asia, as well as between East and South Asia and the Middle East. The migration from the Global South to the North is roughly similar. Both migratory flows are also extensively examined by social anthropologists. Very rare subjects of anthropological research are migrations from the Global North to the Global South. While settlers emigrated from the urban centres and detached rural areas a hundred years ago as emigrants to the colonies of the empires, today it is often individualists who follow this path. It is this latter form of migration that Caterina Reinker dedicates her work to. Reinker examines perspectives and identities of German migrants in Cape Town. These are not migrants who leave their homes without means and / or without perspective. The work, which is based on several months of field work in Cape Town, and which was supervised by Prof. Dr. Michael Bollig, deals with people who emigrate to the South in the search for a fulfilled life (whatever that is to be understood). Some do this with temporary aspirations, some actually emigrate permanently and rule out a return to Germany. However, it seems more likely that options for a return to Germany are retained. None of Reinker’s interviewees had given up their German passport, and for some, the mind game with a possible return is identity forming. Reinker focusses on the design of the vitality of German migrants in a Cape Town district, which is considered to be particularly German and therefore bears the name "Sauerkraut Hill” in the vernacular. Reinker's master thesis provides an important contribution to completing our understanding of global migration. In addition to the large, much-discussed and even more frequently problematized migratory flows, these quantitatively much smaller movements also link the network of global relations.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters thesis)
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-79148
Journal or Publication Title: Kölner Ethnologische Beiträge
Volume: 49
Date: 2017
ISSN: 1611-4531
Language: English
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Humanities
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Fächergruppe 4: Außereuropäische Sprachen, Kulturen und Gesellschaften > Institut für Ethnologie
Subjects: Customs, etiquette, folklore
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Republic of South Africa, Cape Town, Germans, Immigrants, Living conditions, MA thesesEnglish
Republik Südafrika, Cape Town, Deutsche, Einwanderer, Lebensbedingungen, MasterarbeitGerman
Date of oral exam: 2017
NameAcademic Title
Bollig, MichaelProf. Dr.
Refereed: Yes


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