After the dust had settled, one of the key challenges for post-apartheid South Africa was to recoup that which was destroyed by the tragedies of the previous order. The question is; what have we lost? What seemed to be a simple question had actually engendered the kind of introspection that led to a national focus on cultures, some of which are represented in this collection of essays.
Initiated by the post-1994 government, the task of finding ourselves culturally meant rallying resources from different sectors for a common goal. The University of Venda as a research institution was ready and willing; and people of Limpopo led by their royal leadership obliged. A tripartite partnership came into being. The authors of this book are researchers in the Indigenous Music and Oral History Project, whose focus area is indigenous cultures of Limpopo, including music and IKS. The purpose of this book is redressing the past imbalances of the historically marginalized people of Limpopo Province, namely Vhavenda, Basotho ba Leboa and Vatsonga through affirmation, promotion and development of their intangible cultural heritage. This implies research, collection of indigenous instruments, documentation, instrument making and amplification This further menenas preservation of culture in general, as well as research publishing. One of the chapters in this volume is on oral history, and its role in imparting knowledge among indigenous communities. Other focus areas covered in this volume are indigenous performance, food, and clothing of Vhavenda, Basotho ba Leboa and Vatsonga.