- Lance Rothschild
Two years after the killing of 34 miners at Marikana, no official memorial to the massacre has yet been established. Perhaps a state-sponsored memorial to state-sponsored violence can never be anything more than an expedient gesture. But in Cape Town this week, artists have brought the lives of those slain at Marikana into the city’s genteel streets in anarchic, confronting ways. By REBECCA DAVIS.
As women’s month passes most of us by, not really changing anything, one photographer is using her camera to capture the essence of South Africa’s gay and trans women. Not to celebrate, no; but to connect, and to capture a slice of their history. And to prove that they’re just like everyone else. By MARELISE VAN DER MERWE.
When Korean car maker Kia hired Peter Schreyer, and gave the affable, jazz-loving ex-Audi designer a clean sheet of paper, it changed the brand forever. Today’s Kias are sleek and sexy machines, with a distinctive brand identity. The vehicle that heralded the Schreyer revolution was the Kia Sportage. DEON SCHOEMAN drives the recently updated version.
Porn and who gets to screen and watch it has always been a controversial issue in South Africa. In fact, this week the Cape High Court is hearing an application by the Justice Alliance of South Africa and two other organisations to have pay channel StarSat’s licence revoked because it allegedly misrepresented the “type” of adult content it would screen. But who consumes porn in South Africa and where are they watching? By MARIANNE THAMM.
Right now, one of the motoring world’s most desirable production cars is a small two-seater with a four-cylinder turbo engine and a dual-clutch gearbox. That may sound decidedly ordinary, but all doubts are dispelled when you see it in all its composite splendour. DEON SCHOEMAN drives the arresting Alfa Romeo 4C.
The North Gauteng High Court will today continue to hear closing arguments in the Oscar Pistorius murder trial. Yesterday saw Gerrie Nel conclude his arguments for the state, admitting that the evidence against Pistorius is mainly circumstantial, but in totality, sufficiently damning. Today is the last chance for the defence to argue that their client should escape a conviction for murder. By REBECCA DAVIS
It’s almost the end of the road, folks. It’s been a seemingly interminable journey, but today the closing arguments will be presented in the Oscar Pistorius murder trial. Lawyers for the state and the defence are now faced with the unenviable task of shaping thousands of pages of witness testimony into two compelling stories. One will tell the tale of a disabled, anxious man who believed it necessary to protect himself and his lover from threat. The other will tell the tale of an angry, trigger-happy narcissist who killed his girlfriend in a violent rage. Judge Thokozile Masipa has to pick one. By REBECCA DAVIS
Are the country’s atheists any happier, better off or more conscious of issues than their religious brothers and sisters? While South Africa remains an overwhelmingly religious country, there are a fair number of atheists (and Jedi apparently) who move among us. Who are they, what do they get up to and how do they live? By MARIANNE THAMM.
About 40 years ago a handful of lucky South Africans managed to catch a screening of The Rocky Horror Picture Show just before the authorities banned it in the country. Back then, in Apartheid South Africa, the film was hugely transgressive. But does it still have meaning in the 21st century? MARIANNE THAMM took her children to see the stage production at the Fugard Theatre.
Forget the Department of Arts and Culture’s #WearADoek campaign for Women’s Month. It is the simplicity of a young woman who stripped naked and stood quietly below the six-metre-high bronze statue of Nelson Mandela in Sandton last week who captured local imagination. Braveheart, as the woman has been named, has in some way enabled women to “re-embody” our bodies in a space that is generally hostile, an issue which US feminist and activist Eve Ensler, currently in South Africa, has made her life’s work. By MARIANNE THAMM.
The new Porsche Macan manages what many so-called sport utility vehicles don’t: deliver a driving experience that’s unequivocally sporty, despite also offering space for family and luggage. But is it sporty enough to wear the Porsche badge with pride? DEON SCHOEMAN finds out in a rain-drenched Cape of Storms.
According to director Liz Marshall, humans have divided animals into three categories: pets, wildlife and those they don’t want to think about. Her documentary ‘The Ghosts in Our Machine’ follows photographer Jo-Anne McArthur as she tries to find, photograph and document some of these lost ghosts. It’s won over a dozen awards and it’s on at the Labia this weekend. MARELISE VAN DER MERWE suggests you see it.
Picture going on a tour of venues where people go specifically to have sex. Usually with strangers. In all kinds of unusual ways. But, it seems, whatever they’re doing, they’re awfully hygienic about it. Seem like an unusual way to spend a morning? REBECCA HODES actually did it. The tour, that is. Strictly business.
The behaviour of Steve Hofmeyer and the fans that sang Die Stem along with him a few weeks ago has cast Afrikaners as an angry breed, out of touch with the new South Africa. Yet in ‘I, Afrikaner’ a beautiful new film about an Afrikaner family, a more complex picture is drawn. Perhaps as a black woman, I found myself captivated by this story, because I happened to marry into an Afrikaner family. It's no wonder that the film won the best director award at the Durban Film Festival this week. By KIM ROBINSON.
The Honda brand enjoys an elevated status among the motoring public, thanks mainly to a formula of fine engineering and enduring quality, garnished with innovation, individuality, and value. But in South Africa, the Honda Accord has never been a big seller. Can this latest, larger version do any better? DEON SCHOEMAN gets behind the wheel to find out.
Next month one of South Africa’s most notable cultural exports, Die Antwoord, will embark on a major tour of Europe and North America. In June, the same month that Dior co-opted a Die Antwoord anthem to launch a new perfume, 'Addict', the Zef duo released their third studio album, 'Donker Mag'. Profane, disruptive and controversial, perhaps the charm of Die Antwoord is that it has embarked on a very conventional rebellion in soothing middle class anxieties in an increasingly violent and turbulent modern world. By MARIANNE THAMM.
Independent cinemas are a dying breed in South Africa, casualties of the popularity of DVDs, illegally-downloaded movies and the huge expense of moving to a digital operation. One of the most iconic, Cape Town’s Labia cinema, is launching an attempt to save itself via a crowdfunding campaign. By REBECCA DAVIS.