Bo-kaap , Cape Town – Article Example

Bo-Kaap, Cape Town Bo-Kaap is a section in Cape Town, South Africa (SA) that was formerly known as the Malay Quarteron the slopes of Signal Hill and above the center of the city. It derives its name from the fact that its inhabitants were originally from Maritime Southeast Asia; from Javanese and today’s Indonesia who speak Malayu. These people were brought into South Africa as slaves, prisoners, political dissidents and Muslim religious leaders who were against Dutch presence in Indonesia. This paper seeks to highlight on the characteristics of Bo-Kaap by describing it, its community and how it was before and after apartheid.
The founders of Bo-Kaap were the first people to introduce Islam into SA, and their Muslim culture and traditions remain large and vibrant up to date. A unique tribute to the inhabitants of this area to the scenery of Cape Town is the 1844 Nurul Islam Mosque (Wilkinson and Kragolsen-Kille 21). The Bo-Kaap museum that was established in the 1760s is an iconic exhibition of Malay’s cultural contributions to the lager SA ethnic mix. A notable contribution of these people to the South African culture is through their traditional foods. These include bobotie, bredie, koeksisters and sosaties (Wilkinson and Kragolsen-Kille 27).
In the apartheid era, Bo-Kaap was area that was composed of an ethnic mix of inhabitants, and it was the one of the areas under apartheid that housed non-whites in the central business district. The region became a center for Islamic teachings, which were attractive to former slaves who abandoned Christianity for Islam (Wilkinson and Kragolsen-Kille 30). The area was a common ground for recruitment of and spread of anti-apartheid ideology. After apartheid the region became an attractive real estate location, which has seen a gradual increase in the number of foreign non-native inhabitants occupy the region. The area still remains attractive spot for tourists and the younger generation who would want to experience a different culture and feel unique to the region.
Work Cited
Wilkinson, R and Kragolsen-Kille. BoKaap. Cape Town: Struik. 2006. Print.