Tag Archives: Nelson Mandela

Losing in straight sets to the truth about Mandela

Just having tea this morning in Illinois, US, checking out the early rounds at Wimbledon on ESPN, one of the American all-day sports TV channels. Turns out it is 40 years since a black man won Wimbledon for the first and so far the only time — Arthur Ashe in 1975. Yay Arthur. Three of…

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Rhodes Fell

Rhodes tripped on the steps and fell Rhodes skid on a piece of soap in the shower and fell Rhodes slipped from the window of the tenth floor of Caledon Square and fell Rhodes accidentally broke his ribs and cracked his skull in his prison cell and fell Rhodes drowned in the shower and fell…

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Sissy Cecil tests the mettle of university administrators

The statue of Cecil John Rhodes, 19th century Cape prime minister, southern African mining magnate, and British imperialist, is to be removed from its commanding position over the rugby fields of the University of Cape Town.  In response to pressure from a small but effectively organised gang of students — who alternated the shock tactics…

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Remembering Mandela the feminist

By Ntombenhle Khathwane As a black woman, like other black women, I have it tough. Especially in the world of business, corporate and academia: black women have to work harder than any other, including black men, to gain recognition, promotion or even entry. Since I left formal employment and started building a business, I have…

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Mandela no sell-out

Less than a year after his death, it would seem that international icon and the first president of a democratic South Africa, Nelson Mandela, is neither a saint nor a much-loved hero. There are an increasing number of voices and social-media posts, especially, that assert he was not a genuine hero and condemn him as…

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Ray-Ban, Sea Point, you didn’t make nice, man

By Charlotte Johnson I work in public art. I take public art personally. I also believe in its relevance and importance in shaping our cities. And so, I cannot muffle the offence that Perceived Freedom has caused me. And many others, for a number of different reasons. Firstly, public art costs money. A fair amount…

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Winnie Mandela and the misrecognition of black women

Mail & Guardian columnist Verashni Pillay in “Five times Winnie Mandela has let us down” writes that Winnie Madikizela-Mandela’s quest to reclaim the Mandela Qunu home “is another embarrassing incident to add to her growing list of failures”. Pillay says there’s “historical revisionism happening in some quarters of our nation these days that brands Nelson…

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Mandela Day – a neocolonial exercise in the commodification of the good black

While every other black leader in a post-1994 South Africa has been constructed as an inferior “other” by the dominant discourse, Nelson Mandela has been deified as a saintly black and is held in high esteem by whiteness. He has been hailed as a decent and rational African by the moderate liberal white discourse and…

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The A to Z of things we cannot blame on apartheid

At Nelson Mandela’s memorial service, President Jacob Zuma made the point that “he (Mandela) told us that the promises of democracy would not be met overnight … and we all agreed with him … ”. Was this a co-option of Madiba somehow to justify the slow pace of service delivery? While it is true that…

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It’s do nothing days in Zuma’s la-la land

South Africa’s ‘do nothing’ season, officially known as the festive break, is in effect a month-long shutdown that traditionally runs from December 16 to mid-January. The bad economic news is that this time around, it’s going to run for several months longer, at least up to the general election. With the December 5 death of…

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