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Michael Francis

Posts published by “Michael Francis”

I have returned to South Africa.

I now teach Economic History and Development Studies at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. I am happy to be back after a couple years away. I had been teaching anthropology at a Canadian University, but Africa called and I returned.

Why I hate smokers

My disdain (that borders on a hatred) of smokers has nothing to do with my desire for a nanny state or for social controls to…

Israeli-Palestinian conflict leaves me conflicted

I read yesterday that there was a small victory for Boycott Israel Movement in South Africa. The University of Johannesburg (UJ) announced a conditional boycott…

Why I am against affirmative action

I am against affirmative action because it is premised on a fallacy. Race is a misleading political and socially loaded concept that has no real…

Why are South Africans so violent?

I was challenged by a commentator (realpolitik) in my previous blog post to write as a social scientist ie provide some analysis of crime and…

My love-hate relationship with SA

I have returned to South Africa (again). She tends to get under one’s skin in strange ways that make her unforgettable, loveable and detestable in…

Hate crimes and farming in SA

Eugene Terre’Blanche was a figure of ridicule and disdain for many people. He evoked strong responses of anger and shame for his political beliefs and…

SpeakZA: Can Jacob Zuma be called an apie?

I am echoing the old debate where Eugene Terre’blanche referred to a statue of Chief Tshwane as an “apie”. For the record, I do not…

Let’s assume there’s no global warming

If there is no global warming then it is business as usual, right? We should remove any barriers to economic growth and dismiss the consequences.…