Friday, July 19th, 2013

On the Pain of Violent Men, or, Why I’m not Sorry about Max and Montle

TRIGGER WARNING: sexual violence Let me start by saying that I feel very ambivalent about causing two workers to lose their source of income. It makes me uncomfortable to have deprived anyone of a wage in this time of crisis. ‘Getting someone fired’, more than a victory, makes me feel miserable, concerned, confused. There are

Tuesday, July 16th, 2013

South African NGO challenges dominant ideas about how to be a man

Even though the overall media attention for the matter has faded these past few months, women in South Africa continue to be brutalized, harassed, assaulted and murdered by the country’s men (mostly in the domestic sphere by...

Friday, March 1st, 2013

Woman, object, corpse: Killing women through media

Since Valentine’s Day everyone has been talking about the murder of Reeva Steenkamp, although rarely in those terms. We know that her boyfriend, Oscar Pistorius, shot her four times and killed her while she was behind a...

Friday, February 15th, 2013

Why is South Africa such a violent society

Post by Palesa Mazamisa* The heinous, brutal rape and subsequent slaughtering of Anene Booysen in South Africa’s Western Cape province has brought into the open, once again, the miry underbelly of our rainbow nation. At the heart of violence...

Friday, February 15th, 2013

How to deal with sexual violence in South Africa

A month after the BBC wondered if South Africans will ever be shocked by rape, the sadistic rape and murder of the 17 year old coloured working class woman, Anene Booysen, from Bredasdorp, a small town in...

Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

Us and Them: Rape and Racism in India

A year ago, there was some minor hullabaloo created when African students in India were not permitted in some bars. But yeah, it remained a minor tempest. Most likely, prevalent attitudes towards Africans (and dark-skinned people in...

Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012

German amnesia and Herero women

Over the weekend, Geoffrey York, the Africa correspondent for the Canadian Globe and Mail (and apparently also the only correspondent for a major Canadian publication on the African continent) wrote, from Namibia, about the current Herero struggle...

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

“Law and Order: SVU” does DSK

In case you missed it, the cop and lawyers show, “Law and Order,” opened its 13th season last week with a transparent plot based on the Dominique Strauss Kahn rape case.  They didn’t even try hard:  Roberto...

Monday, July 18th, 2011

DSK, the maid from Guinea and ‘agency’

Robert Thornton is an anthropologist who teaches at Wits University in South Africa. He also maintains  a blog: An Anthropologist in South Africa. In this guest post, he gives his take on Dominique Strauss-Kahn and the Guinean-American hotel...

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

Maids in Manhattan

No not the bad Hollywood movie version with its fake set ups, but real life: The life of a hotel maid is not an easy one, with naked men flaunting their wares, verbal...

Friday, May 27th, 2011

When You Refuse, You Say ‘No!’

Gregory Mann Guest Blogger I had to buy The New York Post this week. It’s something I never do because, as the letters page reminded me, it’s something of a Zionist rag. But Tuesday the cover caught...

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Homophobia as National Sport

This may make for depressing reading with your breakfast, but there’s nothing new about the entrenched  homophobia in South Africa, a place where men rape lesbians to “correct” them, a government minister last month refused to open...

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

The films of Rwandan director Daddy Ruhorahoza

“Confession” is a 17 minute long short film by Rwandan filmmaker Daddy Ruhorahoza, about a rape that happened during the Rwandan Genocide in 1994, told through the perspective of the rapist 13 years later. (See a clip...

Monday, December 7th, 2009


Scott Pelley’s excellent report on CBS magazine program, “60 Minutes,” on the causes of the “civil” war in Eastern Congo (it’s more a multinational war), is worth sitting through. Pelley refers to Congo as the “Saudi Arabia...

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

“Is there another word you can use instead of lesbian?’

That’s South African Judge, Ratha Mokgoathleng, unable to contain his homophobia, speaking earlier to the prosecutor in the case of the murderers of Eudy Simelane, a lesbian woman brutally raped and murdered in a township outside Johannesburg....

Friday, August 28th, 2009


My friend Herman Wasserman and I wrote an op-ed for The Observers, the website of the French TV station, France24, on the manufactured controversy around Caster Semenya, the new 800 m woman’s track and field world champion:

Friday, August 21st, 2009


Earlier this week I posted a comment by my friend, Christi van der Westhuizen, going after novelist-singer Toast Coetzer for this statement in an interview: “One probably writes about the things that you think about a lot....

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009


The South African journalist and commentator, Christi van der Westhuizen, passed this on: An “upcoming” singer, writer and journalist with the name Toast Coetzer who gets a lot of airtime in the Afrikaans media made the following...

Wednesday, August 5th, 2009


Jeffrey Gettleman, the New York Times correspondent in East Africa (who seem to report about nothing else but violence, war and death) has a harrowing piece in today’s paper about increasing rape of men by men in...