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Koos Kombuis

Whiteness – it must be possible to transcend black and white divisions (Part 2)

In many ways, this is a time of awakening. I should say “rude awakening”, because the awakening I am speaking of holds many unpleasant surprises. With “awakening”, I mean the sensation of seeing something for what it is for the first time. Waking up from false preconceived notions. A flash of recognition after which nothing…

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William Saunderson-Meyer

Didiza of Tshwane: The face that launched a riot

#TshwaneUnrest. That’s the hashtag that South African twitter chose to bookmark the biggest, most sustained public violence in the 22 years since the advent of democracy. Unrest? It seems that there’s nothing like a well-worn euphemism to make one feel snug and safe in suburbia, while in Pretoria’s townships rioters loot and burn. Two dozen…

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Marius Oosthuizen

Tshwane violence was predicted, now how to fix it

In 2013 we wrote that by 2016 there would be “pockets of political violence”, accompanied by “economic gangsterism … looting and vandalism of private property” in South Africa. We argued that “foreign direct investment will stall”, inflation will rise sharply, the “EFF thrive” and that xenophobia, racism and tribalism would surface. Sound familiar? We arrived…

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Bert Olivier

Anthro-pessimism, robots and Garland’s ‘Ex Machina’

What does the demonstrable pessimism regarding robots and their projected “attitude” towards humans in recent science fictional films tell us about our understanding (or perhaps imagining) of artificial intelligence? To be sure, let me state at the outset there are exceptions to this, even in some of the most pessimistic instances of such films –…

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Thabang Motsohi

Balance of power contests are driving violent community protests

As a society we must all resist and reject the temptation to accept that the violent protests and political killings that seem to occur all the time during the local election years is the new normal. It should not be! The time has come to take responsibility, show leadership and engage through all our stakeholder…

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Kagure Mugo

Should women simply put down a towel during their period and have sex?

Full disclosure: My period has been whack in 2016. It’s been a gauge for stress levels, fitness and how much I’m liking what is happening on the news. Basically it’s been a mess. Further full disclosure: During a particularly stressful work time I had my period for three weeks. Let that sink in. Three weeks….

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Reader Blog

Black economic empowerment is not black economic empowerment

By Michael Nassen Smith The BEE drum has been beaten many times before on both the right and the left on South Africa’s political spectrum. A recent piece on PoliticsWeb penned by John Kane-Berman gave what has become a standard liberal right critique of BEE. I think Berman is right to bemoan the influence of…

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Featured Multimedia

Heads Roll in the Game of Mayoral Thrones

The mayors of Tshwane and Ekurhuleni get chopped by the ANC, King Joffrey style, ahead of the local government elections.

Tshwane Unrest: Who lit the match?

Mail & Guardian journalist Govan Whittles looks into what may have sparked the protests in Pretoria this week.