This book is concerned with the first peoples (those people who are considered indigenous by themselves and others) of southern Africa such as the San, the Nama, and the Khoi, and their rights. Although living in democratic countries like Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Botswana --and in principle sharing the same rights and responsibilities as the rest of the population--practice shows that these peoples more often than not are at the margins of the societies in which they live; they often face extreme poverty, and they frequently are subjected to discriminatory treatment and exposed to all kinds of human rights abuses.
Robert K. Hitchcock is professor of anthropology and geography at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, USA. He has done extensive research and development work in southern Africa in general and among San peoples in particular. Diana Vinding is an anthropologist working with the International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs (IWGIA) in Copenhagen.