Association for Africanist Anthropology
Volunteered - Oral Presentation Session
This paper will explore the changing social climate of mobility for various Black female bed and breakfast (B&B) and guesthouse entrepreneurs who have transitioned to providing accommodations to an increasing number of overnight black domestic visitors to the black townships of Cape Town, South Africa. Many of these entrepreneurs, in the past, focused primarily on accommodating overnight international tourists and guests to the townships. This transition to hosting more Black domestic visitors also reflects a changing social climate of mobility for a new and emerging Black middle-class who make visits to friends and/or relatives in the townships and are able to afford the accommodation options offered by these entrepreneurs. Unlike the seasonal nature of the visits of international tourists and guests, Black domestic visitors from other parts of South Africa, travel to the Cape Town townships throughout the year for multiple reasons, including various life-cycle events, church conferences, and work as well as other activities, and such visitors are critical to the economic sustainability of many of these black township businesses. Black female B&B and guesthouse entrepreneurs, who are women who work at home as well as make home their work, are a part of providing experiences and spaces for such visitors, many of whom would have historically depended on friends and/or relatives in the townships for overnight accommodations. These entrepreneurs and the black middle-class domestic visitors, who they accommodate, reflect changing social climates of mobility within South Africa.