The Bottom Line
Although at first sight Vanishing Cultures looks to be a standard coffee-table book; Peter Magubane's outstanding pictorial record is a valuable insight into traditional Black South African cultures.
- Pictorially magnificent book
- Internationally acclaimed photographer
- Contributions from authoritative academics
- Hard to find in bookshops
- Hardback: 168 pages.
- Publisher: Struik Publishers, Cape Town, © 1998.
- ISBN: 1868259676.
Guide Review - Vanishing Cultures by Peter Magubane
As South Africa comes to terms with the end of Apartheid its traditional life-styles are rapidly being replaced by a hybrid Western culture. Peter Magubane, who has worked for almost 50 years as a photojournalist in South Africa and New York (for Time magazine), has collected together over 200 of his photographs recording the social structure, initiation ceremonies and rites of passage, religious life, customs, dance, art, and vibrant costumes of many Black South African ethnic groups (Xhosa, Zulu, Ndebele, Venda, Tsonga, Basotho, Tswana, Pedi, and Ntwana) as well as the hunter-gatherer life of the Kalahari San. This is an unparalleled book, offering an insight into a rich and varied cultural history of the victims of Apartheid.