Recent Posts

William Saunderson-Meyer

The intellectually supple Mr Zuma does some semantic yoga

It is sometimes difficult to follow President Jacob Zuma’s explanations of events. His utterances can be so convoluted that the thread of logic is all but invisible. Or else they are patently contradictory. At other times he makes plainly incorrect assertions that are never retracted. So they lie there, littering his political reputation like discarded…

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Bert Olivier

Change is happening worldwide…

On October 15 and 21 2012 the Current Affairs programme on the BBC’s Radio 4 broadcast a documentary in the form of an interview with the most cited sociologist and social theorist in the world, Manuel Castells, at The London School of Economics on his (then) recently published new book, Aftermath: The Cultures of the…

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Reader Blog

On the streets of Cologne

By Gaia Manco Paris 2005 Evening, I’m walking home with my roommate, we live in the 10th arrondissement: A man follows us, makes vulgar advances, we walk away, we ignore him. He doesn’t stop, we are afraid, he keeps on following us until we get to a busier avenue. 2008 Bastille food market, grocery shopping…

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Lukas Muntingh

The Mandela Rules: A diplomatic success but will they lead to better care of SA prisoners?

In December 2015 the UN General Assembly adopted without voting the revised UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners now known as the Nelson Mandela Rules “to honour the legacy of the late president of South Africa, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, who spent 27 years in prison in the course of his struggle for…

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Marius Oosthuizen

What is the colour of South Africa’s soul?

In the movie 12 Years a Slave, Solomon Northup asks, “What difference is there in the colour of a soul?” Such a question will raise eyebrows and tempers in South Africa, where the word “colour” sends a rush of emotions flooding down to angry hands from polarising thoughts. We are a rainbow — but our…

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Marcela Guerrero Casas

My memories of the automobile

I will never forget the smell of the seats in our “brand-new”, second-hand car. My parents’ purchase had been a hot topic for weeks and it was finally there, a dark green Renault waiting outside my school. Unaware that a few years later it would be driven over my toe, nothing could bring more joy…

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Rachel Nyaradzo Adams

African leaders, please give us back our dignity in 2016

[dignity / noun, the state or quality of being worthy of honour or respect.] It’s taken me a short while to figure out what upsets me so much about power cuts in Africa. The experience is in both measurable and immeasurable ways un-dignifying. You are in the middle of cooking a meal for the family,…

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Featured Multimedia

Nigerian athlete slides into history

From the sand to the ice, Africa's first woman skeleton racer gears up for the Winter Olympics.

Slavery in Libya

We look at how African men are being auctioned and being sold off to smugglers for as little as $400 as part of Libya's slave trade