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Reader Blog

Rethinking ‘townships’

By Lucille Dawkshas What are “townships”? I’ve often thought of them in terms of the visual meaning of outlying “ships” to the central harbour of a CBD, but what makes suburban areas any different? Wikipedia’s contributors tell me “townships” are: “the (often underdeveloped) urban living areas that, from the late 19th century until the end…

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William Saunderson-Meyer

Mad dog lawmakers and Englishmen go out in the midday sun

The infantalisation of society continues apace. Instead of instilling a modicum of common sense and self-responsibility, most governments find it far less onerous to just swaddle their citizens in cotton wool and park them in front of the TV. This week the South African government tabled draft legislation to make it illegal for school tuck…

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Bert Olivier

Capitalism: Why we live in a ‘schizo society’

What a pleasure it is to be in Istanbul — probably the most sensuous city in the world — for a conference on one of the most innovative and profound thinkers of the 20th century, if not in the history of philosophy, Gilles Deleuze (whose extensive collaborative work with Felix Guattari makes it imperative to…

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Lawyers for Human Rights

The difficulty with De Kock

By Clare Ballard By not releasing apartheid’s most notorious assassin, De Kock, we have released all those who benefitted from his actions … – Tshepo Madlingozi On Thursday, Justice Minister Michael Masutha conveyed his decision to refuse former death squad commander Eugene de Kock’s application for parole to the public. His decision, although unsurprising, is…

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Reader Blog

The hospital has left the building

By Dr Shahra Sattar On Duinefontein Road in Manenberg there is a building that used to be GF Jooste Hospital. This building is not beautiful by any stretch. There are no glittering mosaics or eco-friendly manicured lawns greeting you at its entrance promising a fantastic service. No, this building is surrounded by a train track,…

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William Saunderson-Meyer

The monster in the attic needs therapy

The president’s Cabinet should be a cosy little family of government departments — an inner circle where each ministry supports the other, in turn all making common cause for the greater national good. Instead the avuncular Jacob Zuma presides over a dysfunctional, maladjusted and in some cases, downright sinister bunch. The bullying, thug portfolios congregate…

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Bert Olivier

Worlds in collision

Individuals are “worlds” set on what is often a collision course. In a previous post I wrote about the “diversity of individuals”, where the thought of such potential “collisions” was already latently present. In the last few days I have come across a number of things that have impressed upon me the realisation that the…

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Featured Multimedia

Journalists under fire

Journalists in conflict zones risk their lives to cover the most fraught corners of the globe. We pay tribute to some of those killed, injured and kidnapped.

Mbeki: I don't know, I can't recall

Former president Thabo Mbeki took the stand at the Seriti commission to clear himself of liability of the 1999 arms deal.

Voices of Africa

Defining ‘the African woman’: Save your labels for Tupperware

If there is one thing that I love to do it’s organise things. There is something wonderfully joyous about clothes that are sorted according to their colours, shoes organised by heel height and e-mails that are slotted into descriptive categories and archived. It’s systematic. It’s blissful! It’s neat, and to me neat means manageable. I […]

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176 teachers killed in Nigeria’s Borno state since 2011

One hundred and seventy-six teachers have been killed and 900 schools destroyed in Nigeria’s Borno state since Boko Haram militants intensified their violent attacks in 2011, officials said on Thursday. The governor of the northeastern state Kashim Shettima revealed the horrifying statistics in a statement to a committee attempting to make the country’s schools safer. […]

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Kenya: Teens are having sex, so let them have it safely

It may be a hard fact for some to digest, but children younger than 15 in Kenya are having sex. This is according to the 2008-09 Kenyan Demographic Health Survey, which is the most recent such research carried out in Kenya.  It’s now 2014 and I don’t have empirical proof, but if the rate and age […]

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I claim this piece of Africa for my daughter, Princess Emily

Sure, Will Smith repurposed Bill Withers’ classic Just the Two of Us as an ode to his son Trey. And yes, even more recently, Jay Z included both the heartbeat and cries of his baby daughter Blue Ivy Carter on the track Glory, released a few days after she was born. But do both these acts of fatherly Hollywood […]

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