General

SteinPuff – how much is enough?

We woke up this morning to the news that Christo Wiese had lost 75% of his R58bn (that’s 58 000 million rand) fortune. He is now only worth a paltry R11bn. This all came about because of what appears to be some spectacular accounting principles applied by Steinhoff International, of which Wiese is a 23%…

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A challenging archaeological perspective

In the world of archaeology it seems that it takes a long time for what Thomas Kuhn called a “paradigm switch” to take place. By this phrase – as is well-known – Kuhn (1962) meant a sudden abandonment of a certain fundamental conception of a science, which has held sway for some time, in favour…

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The urgency for ‘critical theory’ to wake up to the extinction of the ‘human’

I recently attended an exciting event: the inaugural symposium of what is set to become the South African Society of Critical Theory (SASCT) at the University of the Free State, arranged by colleagues in the philosophy department, where I work. ‘Exciting’ because its formation is long overdue in a world that is facing a bigger…

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‘Westworld': The shape of the future?

In a previous post I elaborated on an art exhibition at the Venice Biennale of 2017, which thematised the bio-technologies that are in the process of colonising the biosphere on Earth today, arguably with unpredictably deleterious consequences for humans and other living beings. The 2016/17 HBO bio-science-fiction television series, Westworld, based on a similarly-titled Michael…

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When your Wiki page reads like a rap sheet

Being myself unaccustomed to fame and fortune, and the trappings of high profile folly, I don’t have a personal reference for this, but judging from the others it must be a shame when your Wiki page reads like a rap sheet.

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CR17: The “Top 5″ Sickness

Dear Comrade Govender, You seem to forget the reality that:- We cannot say, “Top 8″ – because then we’re broke; We cannot say, “Top 7″ – because then we’re dead; We, as the ANC, are saying, “Top 6″ – and we are hoping that you (Victoria Island) will carry us as we pay-off the factions…

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Pauw’s revelations and democracy

One might wonder – as many South Africans probably do – why there have been, and probably will be, no consequences for those implicated by the revelations in Jacques Pauw’s recent book, The President’s Keepers (NB Publishers, 2017). And I don’t mean only in the light of his revelations (it’s still a bit early); I…

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In Tambo they trust

This year we have heard from the great and the good about comrade OR Tambo, the late leader of the ANC – who led the ANC for many years, in exile. Some having served alongside Tambo, have sought to embellish their own credentials by passing themselves off as more authentic exemplars of Tamboism. Some having…

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CR17: Please fill in the blanks

We are not confused, we can say, “Top 8″, without referring to football and/or soccer. Therefore will CR17 please fill in the blanks publicly – because we are not afraid of “slate politics”. CR17 Candidates: President General: Cyril Ramaphosa Deputy President General: Naledi Pandor Chairperson General: Gwede Mantashe Deputy Chairperson General: Unknown Secretary General: Senzo…

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Some Remarks On A ‘Good’ University

Manzini reflected upon her recent experiences at her new institution. I won’t comment on most of those reflections, and would rather focus on her closing remarks. She asks, “Ultimately, on whose standards do we measure and determine whether a university is ‘good’ or not?” There are two implicit questions here. First, is there but one…

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