Essay on the South African Coloured people The Coloured People come from the interbreeding between the early slaves imported to the Cape, the European White settlers and other indigenous African tribes. They first lived in the Western Cape and were mostly fishermen, farm labourers and servants. They contributed to the current success of the fruit growing,wine, textile, construction and fishing industries Today they are found in all the suburbs throughout SA and contribute to politics, commerce, industry, medicine, law, engineering,education and the arts.
Some of SA’s finest writers and poets such as Adam Small are Coloured. Coloured people played an important role in the struggle against Apartheid. After the Apartheid era Coloured politics have become important in the Western Cape for opposition parties. Patrica de Lille was leader of the Independent Democrats. Coloured folklore, music and their way of speaking has become an intergralpart of the cultural scene in SA.
On every New Year’s day a festival of about 13000 Coloured minstrels parade through the streets of Cape Town dressed in fancy shining clothes and hats. They sing, dance, strum banjos and bang on drums. A traditional song peformed in the parade is “January, February”. The festival is traditionally called the “Coon Carnival”. It ends on 2nd January, which they call TweedeNuweJaar, which is seen as a kind of Independence Day. Today about 87% of Coloured People are Christian.
They are mostly bilingual although Afrikaans is their first language. Their dating and marriage traditions are very much the same as the Whites except for the other 13% who follow the Islamic customs. Many of our SA foods come from the Coloureds, such as Bobotie, snoek based dishes, koeksisters, bredies (stews) samoesas and Malay roti, all of which are staple diets of the Coloured people. Working men often make a lunch of hollowed out bread filled with a stew.