News/Politics

In the ‘pitfalls’ of the national democratic revolution

Way back in 1998, American constitutional theorist Prof Karl Klare published a now famous article in which he set out to define South Africa’s post-apartheid constitutional project. He called this ‘transformative constitutionalism’ and defined it as follows: ‘a long-term project of constitutional enactment, interpretation, and enforcement committed (not in isolation, of course, but in a…

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People of colour carry the burden of environmental racism in a post-racial era

Videos depicting the senseless murders of unarmed people of colour have given birth to a new social movement, #BlackLivesMatter, while bringing to light a reality incomprehensible to white communities: the lives of people of colour have systemically been deemed disposable. To collectively realise the inherent value of black life we must think locally and globally,…

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Raising hair, crowning glory: A poem to thank Pretoria Girls High

By Thirusha Naidu Raising Hair, Crowning Glory Thank you Pretoria Girls High You have introduced us To future heroes. Yesterday, asleep In the soft arms of their mothers Now roused. Coldly, by bleached fingers, from childhood sleep. Dragged by the hair, Protesting, into womanhood . Thank you Pretoria Girls High By your Amazing Grace Africa’s…

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Marikana: Moment of reckoning with whole extractive system

Marikana widows want BASF to admit its complicity as part of the platinum supply chain. The extractive sector in post-apartheid South Africa remains a hotbed of labour and environmental exploitation, with people still working underground in unsafe, unhealthy conditions.  Mining communities continue to be excluded from having a fair share of the wealth accumulated from…

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A brave, brave little boy

When I was a little girl, the thing I was most afraid of, more than anything, was something bad happening to my mother. Once, I answered the phone and heard a voice I thought was my mother shrieking “He’s hurting me! He’s hurting me!” It turned out that it was not her, it was a…

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The Remember Khwezi protest has shone a spotlight on our society’s patriarchal nature

In the last chapter of The Kanga and the Kangaroo Court, author Mmatshilo Motsei starts her concluding remarks by quoting Sello wa Loate: [w]e need to re-evaluate our value system as a society. The highly competitive environment we have created and the resultant conflict and pressure on different sections of our society make post-apartheid black…

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Why a coalition between the ANC and DA would be good for Johannesburg and both parties

Johannesburg is a very different beast to Cape Town. Bigger, more dense, constantly growing; it’s the economic heart of South Africa. Despite its faults, the local ANC government in Joburg has received mostly clean audits and managed to do okay given the massive challenges it faces in such a complex area. There is a lot…

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Rejecting postracialism: Whiteness, morality and decency

Beginning with the contention that most white people view racism conceptually as bad, evil or at least something that is undesirable to be associated with, it is disheartening to see so much support for reactionary #AllLivesMatter, #BlueLivesMatter and similar postracial rhetoric from ostensibly decent people. White America must seek to understand our own existence and its relation to the…

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Why I have decided to vote for a pro-poor political party

I have made my voting choice. Here is my thinking. Firstly, these are local elections and, as a result, no major policy can be tested. I am also not certain that this election, or even our next national elections, are going to lead to any substantial transformation no matter who we vote for. I do…

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Walk the talk, Obama: Help Africa get a permanent seat on the UN Security Council

I am currently in the United States as a 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow; President Obama’s initiative for emerging young African leaders. I have spent six weeks at Virginia Commonwealth University; learning and gaining valuable skills and I am excited to return to South Africa even more determined and inspired. We are currently in Washington and…

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