Dora Tamana

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Biographical information


Dora Tamana


Member of SACP, National Secretary of FSAW, member of the ANC Women’s League 

First name: 
Last name: 
Date of birth: 
Location of birth: 
Hlobo, Eastern Cape (formerly Transkei), South Africa
Date of death: 
July 1983

Dora Tamana (nee Ntloko) was born in 1901 in Hlobo, Transkei, the eldest of seven children. Her childhood centred mainly on the many tasks demanded of a young girl growing up in rural South Africa. Tamana and her four sisters had to help work on their father’s plot, before and after school, where they cultivated potatoes, pumpkins, peas, cabbages, and chillies, as well as keeping some livestock. Every Saturday the girls would go to Idutywa, the nearest town, to sell their produce to make “money so that we could buy cookies and tea and so on”¦” (Tamana in Scanlon, 2007: 169).

• Dora Tamana Biography: South African Communist Party [online] Available at:[Accessed on 18 June 2009]
• Scanlon, H. (2007) “Dora Tamana and Mildred Ramakaba Lesiea” in Representation and Reality: Portraits of Women’s Lives in the Western Cape, 1948-1976. Cape Town: Human Sciences Research Council Press.

Last updated : 06-Sep-2012

This article was produced for South African History Online on 12-Oct-2011