Tag Archives: Rhodes

Redressing Rhodes’ legacy

When Rhodes fell in South Africa it reverberated globally. His statue, gazing over a changed country, is a metaphor for modern-day South Africa. Even though the country’s transition was relatively bloodless, its change mostly peaceful, and its black majority theoretically free; the Rainbow Nation’s democratic achievements are fiercely contested. The inherited systemic inequality, made worse…

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Rhodes Fell

Rhodes tripped on the steps and fell Rhodes skid on a piece of soap in the shower and fell Rhodes slipped from the window of the tenth floor of Caledon Square and fell Rhodes accidentally broke his ribs and cracked his skull in his prison cell and fell Rhodes drowned in the shower and fell…

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I’m sick of statues

I don’t want to tap into the anger, the misunderstanding and the adolescent reasoning anymore. I don’t want to be caught up in the wildfire of people who are wilfully ignorant about our past, and I don’t want to jump on some bandwagon either. 1. This is not about a statue This isn’t just about…

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Revisiting the Rhodes statue

The recent announcement by the University of Cape Town (UCT) that the statue of Cecil John Rhodes would be taken down has, largely, been welcomed. Although I am opposed to this decision, I am alarmed by the attitude displayed by both sides during this debacle. I have swung between extremes depending on how offensive or…

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Confronting our white ignorance in a time when #RhodesMustFall

By Roné McFarlane As the #RhodesMustFall debate continues, there are aspects of white reactions that need to be talked about … by white people. There is, however, a danger in discussing whiteness in the time of the #RhodesMustFall protests. You could rightly argue that it would be detracting from black struggles that are receiving more…

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We can no longer deny that #RhodesMustFall

A good seven or eight years ago, when I was an undergraduate at the University of Cape Town, students arrived on campus one morning to find that the statue of Cecil John Rhodes had been defaced with red spray paint. The message read, “Fuck your dream of empire”. I don’t really recall what my reaction…

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Airbrushing history: Debating Rhodes’ legacy

As the debate raged in Cape Town over whether to remove the statue of British imperialist Cecil John Rhodes, I found myself in a grand house named after him some 6 000 miles away. Rhodes House is the quaint Oxford-based headquarters of the Rhodes scholarships. Named for and funded by Rhodes, the scholarships are awarded annually…

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When I was a spy – part two

As instructed, I kept my alter ego secret — in fact, few people today have any idea I was once a secret agent. Let alone what a bad spy I was. Six weeks after the hurly-burly of starting a new life in a new world, I was contacted at Jan Smuts House and two colleagues…

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