This article is based on a collection of stories about victimisation and
resilience, told by thirty Somali refugees in Cape Town, South Africa. It seeks to
understand how this group of displaced persons remembers their experiences of
homelessness in their ancestral home and their tumultuous journeys to exile. Using
excerpts from the stories, the article attempts to unearth the multiple meanings of
home and flight and connect these to the xenophobic experiences of Somalis residing
in Cape Town. From the narratives, Cape Town-based Somali refugees attributed
their resilience to xenophobic violence to their experiences of political and social
violence in Somalia, their development of survival strategies and their ability to deal
with hostilities during their journeys to exile.
This article is part of broader project on Cape Town-based
Somali victims of xenophobia.