The Production of a Terrortorium, a Terrortory, and an ImagiNation: Fictioning Namibia as a Space of Desire under the Shadows of German Colonialism, South African Apartheid, and the Namibian Liberation Struggle


Renzo Baas

Research Area:


This research project is an attempt to understand how space functions within different totalitarian systems – in this case Colonialism on the one hand and Apartheid on the other. The focus will be on how the various concepts of space (urban/rural; private/public; national/individual) are utilised within literature about Namibia, but from the nations controlling the spaces that were known as German South West Africa and later on South West Africa. Ideas of Utopia, self-realisation, and the manipulation of space and place will be central features within my research project. The methodological approach will consist of a hybrid of literary analysis – with special concentration on the narrative situation – and historical approaches (New Historicism, Discourse Theory).

Through the analysis of literature from the host societies, I aim to create an understanding of why it was important to colonise Namibia. This analysis will thus help reflect back on the colonising societies through their legitimisation of foreign rule. Comparing the two systems of control will help me further create an understanding of how space becomes a central feature in dominating foreign lands, and as a direct consequence, foreign peoples.