Lifestyle

Uncomfortable about current protests? Embrace your discomfort and be part of social change

By Ahmed Riaz Mohamed We live in a country and in a democracy forged through struggle, sacrifice and protest. The recent surge in student-led protest in the country is powerfully reminiscent of apartheid-era resistance and anti-apartheid marches, rallies and sit-ins. These students are channelling the spirit of former student leaders such as Steven Biko who…

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Normalising intimate partner violence among Soweto youth

By Matamela Makongoza, Mzikazi Nduna and Janan Dietrich One of the greatest challenges facing young people today is intimate partner violence. This is usually perpetrated by young men against their female partners. For instance, three out of 10 adolescent males in the Eastern Cape reported beating or raping their partners, and this type of intimate…

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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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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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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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The Exercise

“Let’s do an exercise,” my husband says. It is something he last did 20 years ago, at Harvard; this is the piece he wrote about it at the time. Dinner is over. Our friend Musa, the scientist, says that he thinks he has heard of this exercise. Tonight, the conversation has ranged from Neal Stephenson’s…

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The Khumbul’ekhaya phenomenon as symbolic suicide

By Thirusha Naidu and Andiswa Mankayi One day Mrs Lolo left. It was not a special or a different day. Now it became the day that Mrs Lolo left, perhaps forever. If you met Mrs Lolo on the path to the taxi stop that day you would not have guessed that it would be 30…

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Terminator Genisys’ obsession with the tech threat on the button

I finally got to view Alan Taylor’s Terminator Genisys (2015) on the plane to Korea, which we are visiting for the third time to attend a conference in Seoul on posthumanism, and to do some mountain climbing in the beautiful Seoroksan mountains near Sokcho, a stone’s throw from the demilitarised zone and the North Korean…

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Give your car a hug

So here we are, little more than a century later, and the car is as welcome in every home as the chamber pot was before inside toilets arrived. It wasn’t always so, though. When the first adventurers took to the roads in steam and electric and clockwork and petrol-engined cars in the 1890s only the…

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