Tag Archives: apartheid

Reflections on my life on Robben Island

By Professor Saths Cooper Much has been said and written about apartheid political imprisonment as the triumph of the human spirit under extreme conditions, which it most certainly was. Distance in time and place usually lends a weird enchantment to views and memories that we may have experienced. Our natural tendency is to shy away…

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Where is the wealth Malema wants to redistribute?

In a conversation about South Africa’s socio-economic malaise with a thoughtful sociologist from abroad, he asked the burning question that is shaping South African politics: “where is the wealth?” We talk often in South Africa about wealth redistribution, black economic empowerment and socio-economic rights. Our constitution at the outset sketches a socially just society as…

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Has the time for ‘talks about talks’ come in SA?

The student protests of the last year are reminiscent of the 1976 student uprisings. Those protests were the precursor to a political change in South Africa less than a decade later. When young, educated “born free” South Africans express anger and impatience it’s time to pay attention. They have shown they want action. They want…

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#Fallist culture: The emergence of African fascist nationalism

On how notions of pan-Africanist identity, post-apartheid liberation ideology and demographics are coalescing to give rise to African fascist nationalism Across Africa we’ve witnessed the worst of political permutations as she vaunted herself out from under colonial exploitation. In many instances pseudo-democracy was achieved as a facade  for a new black capitalist elite that mobilised the…

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#FeesMustFall is unravelling SA’s founding pact

Post-1994 South Africa is founded on the principle of progressive access to privilege. This principle implies that those in the suburbs will continue to live there while those in shacks will be progressively admitted into the ranks of those with houses and amenities. It also implies that those that earn decent salaries will continue to…

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Black rage: Does anger justify the means?

“If you do not approve of our methods and tactics of protest, then you are neither with us nor are you for our cause.” This slogan sets a pre-condition for solidarity with a struggle. It requires that one accepts, in good faith, the methods used to advance a struggle. This pre-condition exposes a weaponised logic…

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A letter to a mother who raised black girls

Dear Mama I don’t know if you’ve seen the news: young girls at Pretoria Girls High School have been in the news because their school has racist hair rules. Apparently their some of their parents don’t agree with their protest. What has also been in the news is the story about 3000 girls in the…

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#AndreOlivier: A world where white people took nothing from black people is not a real world, it’s an imagined one

By Sheena Jonker A South Africa where white people gained the position in society that they occupy and the place in the economy that they enjoy through sheer hard work, is an imagined South Africa. It’s not real. When Pastor Andre Olivier says “We (white people) took nothing from black people” he was accessing this…

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Racism, an idea whose time has come, again

As Britain votes to leave the EU, Polish immigrants have come under fire with xenophobic and racist attacks in the bastion of parliamentary democracy. This is no coincidence, as millions of migrants from north Africa, eastern Europe and the Middle East pressurises the once hospitable European community on issues of immigration and race relations, there…

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The TRC as biopolitical imperative (Part 2: The ‘Tumult Commission’)

In the previous post, I mentioned that Sitze (2013) argues that the TRC had its jurisprudential origins (or precedents) in “colonial sovereignty and governmentality”. I discussed how Sitze argues that the indemnity convention originated in the theory of parliamentary (political) sovereignty of Dicey’s English constitutional law. I then discussed how the indemnity convention, as an…

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