Gender violence

Anger, ‘outrage’ and the internet

Quite often, when I log on to Twitter, I’ll see comments like the following: “What are we angry about today? Did I miss today’s Twitter outrage? I don’t know what we’re supposed to be angry about this week, but I’m outraged just in case.” It happens especially after incidents like Bic’s sexist Women’s Day ad…

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20 000 women, for nothing?

Twenty thousand women marched in 1956 and changed the world. We celebrate them this month. They are certainly worthy. **** Some time ago, I went for an interview. When asked by the panel why I wanted to leave the job I was in at the time, I responded that I was tired of the institutional…

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Department of Women should support, not criticise women

Today a tweet was sent by the Department of Women. The question it asked was: ‘What should be done with women who press charges then later withdraw them?’ This very short blog post will unpack why that language is problematic, and does not, as the department later suggested, promote debate. It also provides some answers…

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Stick to just selling the shoes, Marie Claire

Men in heels illicit two emotions, either absolute jealousy at how amazing their legs look or comic relief. Very rarely will men in a pair of patents ever make you stop and think, “You know what, gender-based violence is the worst.” Not often will it make someone think, “As a man, do I engage in…

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Gardening, religion and the magic of sex

I shove my filthy hands into the soil and claw out roots and weeds, savouring the mess. A waft of mulch, half-dead weeds, decomposed worms and God knows what sweetens the air. Soon this muddle will be in order: scooped out flowerbeds surrounded by clipped squares of lawn which I will lay down on this…

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South Africa and other orphaning nations (Jani Allan Part II)

Even now, a quarter of a century later, here in Auckland, New Zealand, I have mentioned to other South Africans Jani Allan’s newly released memoir Jani Confidential and they respond, “so what was she doing with that idiot ET (Eugene Terre’Blanche)?” “For God’s sake,” I reply, “give the woman a break”. As Jani Allan says…

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Jani Allan: Abuse and disgrace (Part I)

“My mother instilled in me from an early age that sex was the inevitable result of a man getting the better of you.” This is one of the many chuckle-worthy lines in “has been” famous South African columnist Jani Allan’s memoir, Jani Confidential. The book has glittering heaps of these verbal gems, which alone make…

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‘It’s time to talk about what’s next’

By Monica Davies If you’ve followed the fight against climate change, in the last year especially, you’ll have noticed voices starting to be raised about things outside climate change — “without racial [or gender or food or economic] justice, there is no climate justice” is the most common one, and it’s entirely true. The problems…

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Fantasies of binaries: Why are we so uncomfortable with difference?

By Pierre Brouard By Sunday May 17 I would have participated in a panel discussion on LGBTI migrants and asylum seekers at an Idahot event organised by the Alliance Francaise in Sunnyside, Pretoria. Idahot is the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, and is intended to celebrate sexual and gender diversity. This celebratory spin…

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Even good girls need sex

I kind of stumbled onto it. Born into multiple consecutive generations of Scottish missionaries and ministers, growing up in the front pews of the church pastored by my dad, achieving two theology degrees of my own as well as years in church service, led me to distance myself from any belief system that enforces a…

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