AFRICA IS A COUNTRY

Afrikaners

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Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

Confronting Afrikaners’ cultural masochism

South African artist Richardt Strydom’s photography is beautiful to me – albeit it in a perverse, guilty kind of way. Through self-observation and re-positioning, his art challenges ideas of power, agency and complicity through analysing and dismantling notions of Afrikaner male identity: “In my experience my forefathers, the previous generation, were the only ones to

Wednesday, March 13th, 2013

The Voortrekker Monument and “the many mistakes” of the Afrikaner past

On a recent trip to South Africa, I managed to fit in a visit to the Voortrekker Monument, the enormous mausoleum on a hilltop just outside the capital Pretoria. The monument, which celebrates Afrikaner nationalism, was begun...

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

Dutch to elect the ‘King of Africa’

Today the Netherlands is holding general elections. Although the global economic crisis and its effect on the Dutch economy dominate these elections, some parties want to make this about Africa.

Sunday, March 11th, 2012

World famous in South Africa

The history of popular music in South Africa continues to interest documentary filmmakers. Of recent offerings two films stand out: “Punk in Africa,” about the history of the genre in Southern Africa since the 1970s (word is...

Thursday, February 2nd, 2012

Inbox

It has come to this. Don’t focus too much on the ‘your scholarship’ line. An email from an American lawyer in my inbox: I am writing to request your help in a matter based on your scholarship...

Tuesday, January 17th, 2012

Afrikaner Bloods

Now and then I’ll scan the international media for reports about “heightening tensions between black and white South Africans.” They never disappoint. (Serious, try it.) Moreover, it seems to have become standard practice to believe and copy...

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

Gaddafi’s African Mercenaries

“A terrible failure,” is what Danie Odendaal calls Gaddafi’s thwarted escape attempt from his last stronghold, Sirte. And he probably knows. From a Libyan hospital bed, Odendaal informed South African Sunday paper Rapport he was one of...

Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

The first Afrikaans film at Cannes

Finally a teaser for the film “Skoonheid,” by Cape Town director, Oliver Hermanus, is now online. Billed as the first Afrikaans film to compete at the Cannes Film Festival, the film also finally screened earlier today at...

Monday, May 10th, 2010

Bok van Blerk’s Darkest Africa

You’d be forgiven if you thought the images below came from a B-grade Hollywood, straight-to-DVD action flick. Complete with the familiar racist tropes of starving, diseased children in a war-torn African country being saved by a blonde...

Thursday, April 29th, 2010

Afrikaners

Striking series (via Herman Wasserman) of “… painted portraits of some of the prominent captains and leaders of the Griquas, the Orlam groups such as the Afrikaners, and other so-called bastard and Nama groups of the 18th...

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

Truth and Reconciliation

In Argentina members of that country’s military dictatorship that conducted a “dirty war”) against its people way back in 1978 still go to jail for their crimes (this week actually), while in South Africa Apartheid’s generals and...

Monday, March 1st, 2010

God was Afrikaans

Satirist Evita Bezuidenhout breaking down the declining significance of the famous war between the Zulus and the Boers in mid-19th century “as God was looking the other way.”  The Boer victory became part of the...

Friday, December 11th, 2009

SPIN / ‘THE TOP 10 MUSIC DOCUMENTARIES OF 2009′

Yes it is that time of year. “The Best of 2009″ lists. Spin Earth, the web-based project of music magazine, “Spin,”(it relies on “300 cultural correspondents in 75 major cities spanning all continents”) has published a list...

Tuesday, October 20th, 2009

The Radio Kalahari Orkes

Let’s talk about the video for the song, “Staan My By” by Die Radio Kalahari Orkes, a South African band that count among its members the controversial author Rian Malan and the actor Ian Roberts (his credits...