Mythic Poison: A Man Fears his Wife

‘The stress is gonna kill me,’ Lukaya points out and refers to his high blood pressure. He sits on a toolbox in a shed made out of corrugated iron shining bright like silver. I feel sorry about him. More than three years ago he welcomed me into his house ‘like a son’. He did not want . . . → Read More: Mythic Poison: A Man Fears his Wife

Black Entrepreneurship: Out of the township into the township

We spend the entire Friday afternoon on the balcony drinking Dutch beer while loud house music vibrates through the speakers. The neighbors don’t complain.  Last year, John moved into the flat toghether with his fiancé, a young professional. When I first met him he was staying in a structure made out of corrugated iron that was . . . → Read More: Black Entrepreneurship: Out of the township into the township

‘I’m so cross that I smack her’: Domestic Violence from the Perspective of a Perpetrator

For the first time the soft-spoken man reveals that the marriage, he so far presented as the corner stone of his life, lies actually in ruins. The matraze on which I was sitting last time is gone. “On Thursday she came home and was mad at me. I don’t know but I think it was because . . . → Read More: ‘I’m so cross that I smack her’: Domestic Violence from the Perspective of a Perpetrator

A Man Bewitched: Relationship Problems Reconsidered

“Each and every day we had problems. We fought about little things. Then I wasn’t even able to get a job. Things were not going the way they are supposed to be. You know I have some qualifications. I tried to sell my CV but there was no response. Then we went to an older woman . . . → Read More: A Man Bewitched: Relationship Problems Reconsidered

Mandela’s Birthday: Where have the leaders gone?

Robert is a long-standing political activist and teacher in Mitchells Plain. He wants to introduce me to his ANC comrades, particularly an old friend who used to be a minister in the South African government for many years. I have seen him on TV before. Today, he looks different. The senior man wears a white-washed Mandela . . . → Read More: Mandela’s Birthday: Where have the leaders gone?

Fan Fest in Cape Town’s “Ghetto”

One of the five FIFA Fan Fests in Cape Town takes place in Swartklip stadium in Tafelsig, a neighbourhood located in Mitchells Plain, one of the largest townships in South Africa. The settlement was established in the 1970s under Apartheid. The ideology of racial segregation classified people who did not fit into the categories of either . . . → Read More: Fan Fest in Cape Town’s “Ghetto”

The time of the Wuwuzela: Kick Off in Khayelitsha

Mcendisi calls to ask me if I would go to the city center to watch the kick-off of the FIFA Soccer World Cup. Like most of his friends he does not have a car to go where tourists and fans from all over the world will celebrate the opening on this beautiful winter day. Mcendisi lives . . . → Read More: The time of the Wuwuzela: Kick Off in Khayelitsha

Transforming Gender Norms

In the afternoon I visit Malusi in Khayelitsha, the largest black township in the Western Cape. Last time we met, he lived in his mother’s brick house which was built as part of a public housing scheme a couple of years before. Now I find him in a informal settlement just nearby. I am surprised. Burglar . . . → Read More: Transforming Gender Norms

Pentecostal Miracles

Everybody is urged to open up, to close ones eyes and to reach out for the sky to feel god’s presence. “If you came just as a spectator nothing will happen,” announces the pastor. I feel caught. I am reluctant to lift my arms merely turning my palms to the ceiling, just in case some energy . . . → Read More: Pentecostal Miracles

Urban Development: Pentecostal Style

I enter the community centre in Tafelsig, considered to be one of the most poverty stricken and crime infested neighborhoods of Cape Town. I spent several months there and had already learned about the power of Pentecostal churches. Tonight Jesus Celebration International has invited people to come and heal in Jesus’ name. Some color prints of . . . → Read More: Urban Development: Pentecostal Style