Advertisements
Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘apartheid’

h-20-1489637-1239274441

Excerpt from an essay in “Le Monde Diplomatique” (you need a password) on postelections South Africa by Achille Mbembe, Johannesburg-based professor of social science and history–and public intellectual (Mbembe also made a star-turn in Jihan Al-Tahri’s excellent documentary “Behind the Rainbow“:

The recent elections highlighted three long-running trends that look like making a major impact on the future of South Africa. The ANC has been deserted by progressive white liberal voters who had overcome racial prejudices and voted with the black majority since 1994. Also, the small regional parties are in disarray and the electorate has polarised around two relatively distinct groups with racial connotations: the black majority, whose constituency is the poor, and a coalition of minorities drawn from relatively well-off white, mixed-race and Indian voters. In addition, there is the republic’s creeping partition. Another phase of internal and external migration is under way.

(more…)

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

“… What did surprise me during my lecture tour was not the racial tension but how much discussions about race in South Africa sounded just like conversations in the United States. There was something eerily familiar to me, a lifelong white U.S. citizen, about those discussions. I have heard comments from black people in the United States …, but I’ve also heard white Americans articulate views on race that were sometimes exactly like white South Africans’. I learned that even with all the differences in the two countries there are equally important similarities, and as a result the sense of entitlement that so many white people hold onto produces similar dodges and denials. Those similarities: South Africa and the United States were the two longstanding settler states that maintained legal apartheid long after the post-World War II decolonization process. The crucial term is “settler state,” marking a process by which an invading population exterminates or displaces and exploits the indigenous population to acquire its land and resources, with formal slavery playing a key role at some point in the country’s history. Both strategies were justified with overtly racist doctrines about white supremacy, and both required the white population to discard basic moral and religious principles, leading to a pathological psychology of superiority. Both of those settler strategies have left us with racialized disparities in wealth and well-being long after the formal apartheid is over. The main difference: The United States struggles with its problem with a white majority, while South Africa has a black majority. But what I found fascinating his how little difference that made in terms of the psychological pathology of so many white people. So, as is typically the case, my trip to South Africa taught me not only about racism in South Africa but also in the United States, which reminded me that perhaps we travel to observe others so that we can learn about ourselves.

United States activist-scholar Robert Jensen writes about his insights from a recent trip to South Africa,

Read the reast of the piece.

Read Full Post »

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Inja” (Dog), a short film by South African-Australian director Steve Pasvolsky, about a relationship between a dog and two men–a white farmer and a black farmhand in South Africa. (The film won the award for Best Short Film at the American Academy Award in 2003.)

Worth the 17 minutes.

Read Full Post »

Vodpod videos no longer available.

To coincide with the commemoration of the June 16, 1976 uprising in South Africa, the Harlem-based Imagenation Cinema Foundation is screening “Skin,” a fictional film based on the life of Sandra Laing, a South African woman born to white Afrikaner parents in the mid-1950s and later declared black by the authorities because of her dark skin and frizzy hair.

The film stars the British actress Sophie Okonedo (“Hotel Rwanda”) as Sandra.

[The documentary, above, about Sandra’s life was screened on South African pubic television in 2000.]

Read Full Post »

lions-1974-full-back-andy-015

The British and Irish Lions rugby team is touring South Africa this month. A series of fifteen captioned photographs presented in a slideshow on The Guardian’s website recalls an earlier, controversial tour by the Lions to Apartheid South Africa in 1974. This picture was taken after a game between the Lions and a local team of black (African) players (who were affiliated to a smaller union shunned by most black South Africans at the time) to present a soft image of Apartheid’s brutality.

The caption to the photograph says a lot:

Full back Andy Irvine recalls the story behind this iconic photograph: “The Lions had played the Cape Coloureds in Cape Town, but this was the first time we had ever played a black team. It was a bit of a milestone to play the Leopards because up until then there was no way that the South African rugby union would have allowed us to mix with blacks. I do know the photograph, but I can’t remember much about the guy I am shaking hands with. We won quite well [56-10] from what I remember and we found them really nice guys. Personally, apartheid was something I was very conscious of. I had real reservations about whether or not I should go, but I was a 21-year-old, starry-eyed rugby player and the ambition of any rugby player is to play for the Lions and it was something that I desperately wanted to do. And I don’t have any regrets, though I have one or two reservations”

The full gallery, including players frolicking on the beach and just having a good time.

Read Full Post »

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Posted with vodpod

From the archives.

A clip from a longer interview with writer Nadine Gordimer in 2005.

And in October 1982 in a talk entitled “Living in the Interregnum,” (one of my favorite pieces of writing on the conundrum of South Africa, that despite the context changing, still remains relevant)  she told an audience at the New York Institute for the Humanities, among other things, that:

(more…)

Read Full Post »

masekela

Jazz trumpeter Hugh Masekela takes CNN on a tour of his Johannesburg.

Part 1 and Part 2.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »