Equality

Being a dominee in SA today – A letter to my Dutch Reformed ancestors

By Nadia Marais Dear ancestors, I write to you because I hope you might help us following the uproar last week after the Dutch Reformed Church’s General Synod decided to recognise same-sex relationships. On the one hand it is strange that there is such an uproar at all, not only because one of the core…

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#WitsFeesMustFall: Why part-time student work is not the answer

I must commend the Wits students for standing up for a very real issue that affects students across the country. You are my heroes! Some social media commenters have berated the student protesters for not finding part-time jobs to fund their studies. Based on my own student experience at Wits, I cannot agree that it…

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Beauty is neither noble nor obligatory

It is generally understood that beauty is to be desired, it is desirable because it is inherently good. When asked to describe beauty, it is difficult to do so in terms that are divorced from concrete experience. Philosophers have argued about it for millennia. Feminists have tried to reclaim beauty by rebranding it, in this…

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Of maids and madams: The case for domestic workers

Two weeks ago News24, in partnership with Code4SA, published a tool to calculate a reasonable wage to pay a domestic worker in South Africa. Based on data submitted by users, the news site found that on average a domestic worker in the Western Cape is paid R188.50 a shift, the highest when compared to other…

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On assimilation and double consciousness

“In common with many Bombay-raised middle-class children of my generation, I grew up with an intimate knowledge of, and even sense of friendship with, a certain kind of England: a dream England composed of Test Matches at Lord’s presided over by the voice of John Arlott, at which Freddie Trueman bowled unceasingly and without success…

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Urgently rethinking mental health in South Africa

As troops of psychologists flocked into Joburg last month, Emperors Palace morphed into a marketplace of ideas. My everyday work context is a busy public hospital setting, so as I prepared for this annual congress, mental health was on my mind. And it still is, because October is mental health month, and Saturday was World…

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Negotiating my identity as an introvert in an extroverted society

By Magnolia Bahle Ngcobo-Sithole When someone asks me “Who are you?” I often respond by giving my name and surname. If we keep the conversation going long enough I start talking about the work that I do. I may also mention some of my hobbies. The conversation stays superficial and safe. I never talk about…

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It is too soon to forget about apartheid

I recently watched the movie Woman in Gold. It is based on a true story about Maria Altmann’s journey in getting the Austrian government to return to her a Klimt painting that was stolen from her family during the Nazi occupation of Austria during World War II. This women’s journey towards justice is a long…

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How to transform the Boks…

The first time I heard of the Springboks was in 1993. My earliest recollection of this national brand was the lost (0-1) home series against the French. The only thing I recall from this was the heavy scar on the face of the Les Blues’ captain, Jean-Francois Tordo, giving the thumbs up as he left…

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Nuclear, single or same-sex family structure does not matter, healthy parenting does

This week Australia’s Victorian government introduced legislation granting same-sex couples equal adoption rights. The passing of this legislation has been duly celebrated across the world. In addition to this, the US Supreme Court’s legislation of same-sex marriage in June this year was lauded as a triumph of equality, and also saw an enormous celebratory response….

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