Posted inGeneralMedia

The lost sense of community: Christopher Nolan’s ‘Dunkirk’

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Christopher Nolan’s recently released feature film Dunkirk not only fills a long-existing gap in cinematic coverage of important historical (particularly wartime) events; it also highlights something of contemporary significance: the glaring difference between the world of the 1940s and that of today, namely the strong sense of community that animated people back then, and which, […]

Posted inBusinessGeneral

The essence of neoliberalism

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France’s pre-eminent sociologist and social theorist Pierre Bourdieu, who died not so long ago, did not pull his punches when it came to identifying the hegemonic economic system of the present, neoliberalism, ruthlessly as a “utopia of endless exploitation”. In an article titled “The essence of neoliberalism” (in Le Monde Diplomatique, December 1998) he puts […]

Posted inEnvironmentEqualityGeneralLifestyle

The ‘happiest’ nations in the world – what do they have in common?

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Some of you probably know about the so-called “happiness index” that has been published on a regular basis for some time now. It lists the countries of the world on the basis of their ‘happiness’ and obviously, the index has a way of establishing such ‘happiness’ – a number of criteria, that is. This is […]

Posted inEqualityGeneralLifestyle

Mitchells Plain: Making the road as we walk

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“Wanderer, your footsteps are the road, and nothing more; wanderer, there is no road, the road is made by walking.” Antonio Machado My dad, though still sceptical of social media, has increasingly warmed up to Facebook and recently left a comment on my timeline referencing Machado’s poem (above). He said: “It seems you and your […]

Posted inEqualityGeneralNews/Politics

A queer understanding of community?

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By Matthew Clayton* & Thorne Godinho** It should come as no surprise that South Africa’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex community is stratified along similar race and class lines as the rest of South African society. The big umbrella that is the LGBTI term actually falls short of being big enough to cover white […]

Posted inGeneral

Resisting the dehumanising architecture of the ‘space of flows’

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Against the background of my previous post on “The ‘space of flows and the social elites of today”, it is illuminating to take note of Manuel Castells’s (The Rise of the Network Society, 2010: Chapter 6, Section 6) interpretation of contemporary, “postmodern” architecture as an architecture that has been redefined by the space of flows […]

Posted inGeneralNews/Politics

Is hierarchical democracy an oxymoron?

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I sometimes wonder if the constitutional notion of “participative democracy” is not just an impossible, idealistic dream. We are eighteen years down the road since our 1994 elections and the only hard evidence I have of my participation in our new democracy has been making my mark on a few ballot papers. The countless thousands […]