My Playlists

My Playlists

ZDF Enterprises ZDF Enterprises Logo

South Africa – The Land of Hope1795 – 1913 (Episode 2)

Part 2 of the feature documents the struggle for land and power in South Africa. The two competing parties in these wars were the Brits and the Boers. The Black population was not even asked about their stance. The British brought missionaries into the country, while the earlier settlers at the Cape had, in the meantime, developed their own identity. They called themselves Boers and had no intention of leaving the country again. Initially, the Brits showed their liberal side by abolishing slavery. This led the Boers, who disapproved of this move, to embark on their legendary “Great Trek” into the interior, far away from the despised Brits, always in search of more freedom and independence.

The situation took a dramatic turn when the first diamond was found in Kimberley. From that point on, at the latest, the Britons, too, started to view the land with a different eye. But the discovery of the diamond was only a prelude of things to come, namely the discovery of the world’s largest gold field near Johannesburg, which triggered a gold rush. In no time at all, the country was catapulted into the Industrial Age. It beckoned with enormous profits to be made and a seemingly inexhaustible supply of cheap labour – the Black native population. What followed were protracted wars, scorched earth, concentration camps, and tens of thousands of casualties. The Boers were defeated by the superior British military force, but the true losers in these wars were the Blacks.


1 × 50′
Produced by
Gruppe 5 Filmproduktion GmbH in co-production with WDR, Arte and SWR
Year of Production
Original language
As seen on
Available languages
Brochure (343.43 KB)