This is the sound of Cecil John Rhodes falling

Historic moments get a lot of phone camera coverage these days, but I wondered if radio could better capture the atmosphere at the rally to celebrate the removal of the Rhodes statue at the University of Cape Town. As the #RhodesMustFall movement said repeatedly, it’s not just about a statue. So I recorded what people were saying and singing.

I took a portable digital recorder to the mass rally outside the Azania House (the renamed administration building occupied by the student activists). The rally featured powerful speeches from students, academics, workers and school children. There was poetry, song, and then the mass surge to upper campus to see old Cecil the statue being taken down and driven off on the back of a lorry.

Sophie Woolley

Sophie Woolley is a British writer, journalist and performer currently living in Cape Town.

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