Lifestyle

How to help students succeed at university

By Rakhee Naik and Safiyyah Pahad After 21 years of democracy, people still question whether apartheid is a prominent reason impacting on the current state of education. Whether acknowledged or not, we must consider its impact on predominantly black students in accessing resources and educational opportunities. This is exacerbated by their limited social and cultural…

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On idiots and aliens

So, how many of you have ever been abducted by aliens? I first realised I might have been when I googled “aliens” after hearing that July 2 was World UFO Day. Up popped a story on Metro.co.uk headed “I was abducted by aliens — and they put a machine in my body” where a fellow…

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Sex is complex: Gender, HIV and Charlie Sheen’s disclosure

By Pierre Brouard So Charlie Sheen is in trouble again — this time because he has been forced to disclose his HIV status to be one step ahead of the tabloids, and to cut off the money supply to extortionists who had him over a barrel. The competing narratives around his disclosure have been fascinating:…

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What is ‘post’ in post-apartheid? Reflecting on my experiences

By Iris Nxumalo In a very engaging, robust class discussion about post-colonial societies, my lecturer challenged us by asking, “What is so post about post-colonial societies?” I paused. Upon reflection, I started to unpack our categorisations of people’s lived experiences into neat, temporal frameworks that organise our histories. I started to interrogate the places and…

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Dear young African, it’s time to wake up

No, this is not about #FeesMustFall or #RhodesMustFall. It’s about stepping up to the leadership plate when the doors to lead are flung open for you to walk through. Are you well-equipped to take up the leadership mantle and lead when the old-guard fall by the wayside? Where is your attention? What are you focused…

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Skattie, your narrative is changing

“Jou narrative is nou in sy moer in,” my good friend Juan WhatsApped me after I told him the news. I thought: there it is, the opening line for a blog post I know I need to write and which has proved to be harder than pretty much anything I’ve submitted to Thought Leader. Juan…

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‘Don’t you want to be white?’

By Lorato Palesa Modongo “Coming to a new country always forces you to confront things about yourself that you never considered before.” — Staceyann Chin, poet. I am from Botswana. Literally next door. I came to South Africa in 2013 to take up postgraduate studies at Stellenbosch University. I had three reasons. Firstly, psychology is…

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Emerson, a much-neglected thinker

Ralph Waldo Emerson — the leader of American “Transcendentalism” in the 19th century — has a lot to teach the self-obsessed, narcissistic, smartphone-wielding generation of today. Despite the fact that his famous essay, “Self-Reliance” (1841; available here) is written in the excessively patriarchal language of the time — one might be forgiven for thinking there…

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Uncomfortable about current protests? Embrace your discomfort and be part of social change

By Ahmed Riaz Mohamed We live in a country and in a democracy forged through struggle, sacrifice and protest. The recent surge in student-led protest in the country is powerfully reminiscent of apartheid-era resistance and anti-apartheid marches, rallies and sit-ins. These students are channelling the spirit of former student leaders such as Steven Biko who…

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Normalising intimate partner violence among Soweto youth

By Matamela Makongoza, Mzikazi Nduna and Janan Dietrich One of the greatest challenges facing young people today is intimate partner violence. This is usually perpetrated by young men against their female partners. For instance, three out of 10 adolescent males in the Eastern Cape reported beating or raping their partners, and this type of intimate…

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