On the beauty of black story(tellers)

Parents of black children do not have it easy. The world is an ugly place, but it saves its most brutal faces for black people. But even before all that, before our children learn of the violence, both casual and profound, that lies in their path, there are the awful silences. Children's stories, in print, … Continue reading On the beauty of black story(tellers)

Nolite te bastardes carborondurum: A Maternal Reading of The Handmaid’s Tale

In anticipation of the forthcoming Hulu dramatization, I reread Margaret Atwood's iconic dystopian, feminist text, The Handmaid's Tale.  Well, only sort of. I have a lot less time and a lot more toddler in my life than I did when I first read the book twelve years ago.  This time, I listened to the unabridged audiobook. … Continue reading Nolite te bastardes carborondurum: A Maternal Reading of The Handmaid’s Tale

Obliterated Places

    I’m a middle class black person who is married to a white person and who happens to live in a hopelessly unintegrated city (Cape Town).  It should therefore not surprise you to learn, reader, that I am often The Only Black Person in the Room.  It doesn’t often surprise me much, having lived … Continue reading Obliterated Places

The ‘I’ Word

There’s a word I’ve been religiously avoiding using in all my conversations, and writing about this experience, and the word is this: infertility.   I avoid it partly because our doctor is yet to use it to refer to either of us (medically, officially, you are only allowed to assign it after a couple have … Continue reading The ‘I’ Word

The Fear

By Rumbi http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E0CazRHB0so A feminist shit-storm of epic proportions (is there any other kind?) ensued two weeks ago when Lily Allen released her clever, satirical video for her track Hard out Here. The video features, amongst other things, a medley of women, many black, dancing in the fashion we've become accustomed to in this age … Continue reading The Fear

Narrating Grief

“We tell ourselves stories in order to live...We look for the sermon in the suicide, for the social or moral lesson in the murder of five. We interpret what we see, select the most workable of the multiple choices. We live entirely, especially if we are writers, by the imposition of a narrative line upon … Continue reading Narrating Grief

The Politics of the Papacy: thoughts on Pope Francis

I am not a fan of the Catholic church. Between their sketchy history of protecting sex offenders who also happen to be priests, and their stubborn insistence on clinging to comically outdated, hardly helpful dogmatic interpretations of god's thoughts on abortion, gay people, women, birth control, I pretty much ignore whatever comes out of the … Continue reading The Politics of the Papacy: thoughts on Pope Francis

Steve Biko on Allies: Reflections on Masculinity Work

Two weeks ago, I attended an engaging discussion on gender-based violence and what is involved in the work of stopping it. At this event, one of the panelists raised the issue of masculinity work as a crucial part of this. I was intrigued: whilst this is not my first time at the masculinity rodeo, per … Continue reading Steve Biko on Allies: Reflections on Masculinity Work

Home Affairs

I officially became a South African citizen this morning. This bright, sunny spring morning, in a dull, grey bureaucrat's office, in the presence of said bureaucrat and an administrator who were both very kind and chatty (and who reminded me that I now was sworn to supporting Bafana Bafana no matter who they were playing, … Continue reading Home Affairs

Inventing Your Life’s Meaning: Advice from a cartoonist

Images by Gavin Aung Than, Words by Bill Watterson, borrowed from zenpencils.com  My husband sent me this cartoon by Gavin Aung Than.  It's been going around for the last few days but I only managed to get round to reading it today.  Than beautifully illustrates a speech given by Bill Watterson, the legend behind Calvin … Continue reading Inventing Your Life’s Meaning: Advice from a cartoonist