Health

A world in need of redemption

This morning my two sons and I were having a texting exchange on Skype, while all of us were on our computers and online for various reasons — I was working and chatting to them in-between reading a PhD-student’s latest chapter of his thesis, and at least one of them was working while chatting too….

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‘Pictures at an Exhibition:’ Mussorgsky, painting and Virilio’s ‘grey ecology’

In my previous post, I pondered the work of Paul Virilio on the ‘accelerated’ lives we lead in the early 21st century, and tried to explain what this has to do with the never-ending stream of images bombarding one on a daily basis. What I did not have space to do, was to draw attention…

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The healthy way to get around our cities

Cape Town, like any urban area, is a city on the move. You can see it in every corner of its 2 461km2 metropolitan area, where 3.7-million people jostle for space on our roads. From Mitchells Plain to Milnerton, Sea Point to Strand, congestion is commonplace and smog levels are rising. Traffic jams mean lost…

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How (virtual) ‘speed’ has changed our way of life

Paul Virilio is a very important, if unusual, thinker. An architect and philosopher, his work has transformed the way people think about the relationship between speed (or acceleration), visuality (or visual culture), technology, the military, and the distinctive mode of existence of people in the early 21st century. This is how Virilio expresses the links…

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Does Philosophy have a function in society?

A doctoral student in philosophy at the University of the Free State, Mark Amaridakis, recently reminded me of the important contribution made to philosophy — specifically the Critical Theory of the so-called Frankfurt School — by Max Horkheimer, one of the Frankfurt Institute for Social Research’s early directors. This made me pick up one of…

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What we’ve learnt from analysing 300 calls to a mental health helpline in South Africa

By Dessy Deysel and Dr. Linda Eskell Blokland We see the toll-free numbers on TV, read about them in magazines and newspapers, hear radio personalities encourage us to reach out. Helplines for depression, anxiety, and other psychiatric conditions are being used daily in our country, where one in three of us will likely experience a…

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Dutch Reformed Church leader misrepresents paedophilic disorder as same-sex sexual orientation: An open statement by PsySSA

Introduction The Psychological Society of South Africa’s (PsySSA) Sexuality and Gender Division (SGD[1]) welcomed the Dutch Reformed Church Synod’s decision in 2015 to embrace gay and lesbian ministers/reverends, ordain them in their calling as ministers/reverends, and acknowledge and bless gay and lesbian congregants’ unions by conducting and officiating their marriages under the Civil Union Act….

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The battle for America’s soul is also the battle for the world’s soul

Watching the tragicomedy playing itself out in America around the determined attempt on the part of Trump and the Republicans on the Senate, to appoint Brett Kavanaugh as lifetime judge on the panel of judges of the US Supreme Court, I had the uncanny feeling that this showdown between the forces of retrogressive neoconservatism and…

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Sense8 – The full spectrum of life and love

Although I have done work on the astonishing Netflix television series, Sense8 (a play on ‘sensate’) before, it was restricted to the first season. Since then, I have viewed the Christmas Special, the second season, as well as the two-and-a-half hour conclusion-substitute for a third season (which was ‘inexplicably’ cancelled by Netflix), Love Conquers All,…

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The American fascist, the Canadian activist and the French poststructuralist

In the Preface to Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari’s major work, Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia (University of Minnesota Press, 1983, p. xii) Michel Foucault — another formidable post-structuralist thinker — makes the following observation in his brilliant characterisation of the book, where he lists the hostile forces targeted by Deleuze and Guattari: Last but not…

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