Ethno-community archiving: selected case studies in Zimbabwe with emphasis on oral history

Sindiso Bhebhe, Mpho Ngoepe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Community archiving is initiated for varied reasons by different communities. Some of these archives can be centred on ethnicity, sexual orientation, race, religion, economic status and physical location. However, the major driving force motivating community archiving is generally the politics of identity. In any perceived external threat, similar communities are likely to come together and defend themselves. It is this general human survival tactic that can help explain the formation of some community archives. In this study, ethnicity as a pull coalescing force for some purposively selected community archives in Zimbabwe was looked at analytically. The main objective being that of understanding how ethnicity is influencing community archiving in Zimbabwe. This objective was derived from the problem statement, which showed that ethnicity is indirectly or directly at play in the documentation of the national heritage. The study concludes by arguing that national unity is likely to be achieved through pluralism and diversity and not through the promotion of singularity. It is also recommended that mainstream heritage institutions should be inclusive of all especially having minority groups within their staff members who may play a decisive role in the documentation of the ethnic minorities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)306-323
Number of pages18
JournalAfrican Identities
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2023


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