Friday, February 29, 2008

Afrikaans is op die regte pad... Danny Titus lei ATKV


Dit is met opgewondenheid dat ons kennis neem van die aanstelling van prof. Danny Titus, as ATKV se uitvoerende direkteur: kultuur (Danny Titus nou ATKV se hoof, Beeld, 29 Feb 2009) Hy neem die leisels oor by Coenie de Villiers. Hierdie besluit is inderdaad rigtinggewend, nie net vir die ATKV en kultuur in die land nie, maar vir versoening en nasiebou. In die lig van die onstellende ontwikkelinge die laaste paar dae, staan hierdie skuif in die teken van hoop. Dit is hoopvol dat die ATKV ( en hier moet Hans du Plessis en die direksie geloof word) hierdie stap neem en op so ‘n wyse die neeerslagtigheid, deesdae rondom die plek van Afrikaans en Afrikaansprekendes aan die kaak stel.

Prof. Titus, leidende akademikus en gemeenskapsleier, asook oudstudent van Universiteit van Weskaapland, wat sy doktoraat in die regsgeleerdheid in Nederland verwerf het, is van mening dat die ATKV deel is van die nuwe Suid Afrika en ‘mense kan saamneem na ‘n verenigde Suid Afrika....’. Hy dien onder andere op die direksies van die Aardklop Kunstefees en Transparency International, in Suid Afrika, maar is ten diepste ‘n intellektuele leier, gevorm in die kerklike en studentebewegings van sy dag.

Die ATKV het met hierdie aanstelling, (miskien sonder dat hulle dit weet) emfaties, ‘n streep getrek deur vele stereotipes t.o.v. wit Afrikaanssprekendes, in Suid Afrika. Daar is nogsteeds diegene wat vir hulself en kinders ‘n toekoms en sleutelrol sien in die land, as ware Afrikane. Die historiese rol van mense soos Beyers Naude, Van Zyl Slabbert, Willie Jonker, Ingrid Jonker, Breyten Breytenbach, Nico Smith, Max du Preez, o.a.- en vandag nog, Melissa Steyn, Christi van der Westhuizen, Carl Niehaus, Klippies Kritzinger, Gerrie Lubbe, en so kan mens aangaan, illustreer die rykheid van die rol wat wit Afrikaanssprekendes speel. Hierdie hier-wees, gewortel wees is integraal tot die rykheid van hierdie land en kontinent, en daarom staan hierdie besluit in die tradisie van hierdie rol, wat vorentoe nog gespeel sal word. Titus se aanstelling bring verrykende, maar verruklike moontlikhede, met sy skerp intellek, passie vir die taal en die kultuur, maar ook fyn aanvoeling en vir die omgewing waarbinne Afrikaans, as Afrika taal gaan groei. Hierdie is ‘n groot stap in die tuiskoms, nie soseer van Bruinmense nie, maar van Afrikaans, van alle Afrikaanses. Dit was ‘n lang pad, Danfred, seun van die Boland, maar wees verseker daar lê ‘n langer pad voor.... in die woorde van Adam Small, eertydse dosent aan UWK....

Die pad gaan tussen kliprante en aalwee,
swaar swartvlerk voëls styg op en skree,
in wolke stof stap veewagters en vee;

die pad gaan tussen mols-en mierhoop, singel
om pikswart vroue wat hul ringe rinkel
na die godverlatenheid van ‘n negosiewinkel;

die pad gaan op die middag hier plek-plek
onder swart lugte waaruit blitse lek
en die onrus roffelend om die hart laat trek;

die pad gaan tussen doringbos en –boom,
swart bessies, nou and dan ‘n modderstroom,
die pad gaan deur ‘n donker, donker droom

Adam Small: Sê Sjibbolet.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Bekamp rassisme by Kovsies

Die gewraakte inisiasie rite by die Reitz koshuis van die Kovsies, wat die hele land aan die walg het, maak 'n sweer oop wat al lankal gedreig het om oop te bars. Ons voeg ons stem by die absolute afkeur en skok.

Daar sal egter ook gekyk moet word na die feit dat dit bloot die punt van die ysberg is. Daar is wydverspreide weerstand vanaf wit studente teen 'integrasie' van koshuise. Nou moet ons verstaan: dis 14 jaar na Madiba as president ingehuldig is, die huidige studentecorps is gebore in die middle na laat 80, toe dinge al skuif in die land, so hulle het nie 'onder apartheid' groot geword nie.

Aan die anderkant is daar daai klomp Heidedallers,Noord Kapenaars, Karoonaars, wat Afrikaans praat en leef, wat op Vrystaatkampus kom, niks erg het aan politiek het nie en dan by koshuise (juis omdat hulle nie wit is nie !) nie welkom voel nie, of uitgelewer is aan siek sadistiese seniors. Die realiteit is dus dat die volk nog nie deur die veranderinge in die land gewerk het nie. Die opvoeding van ons kinders kan egter nie op die spel geplaas word twv hierdie rassisme nie...dit moet veroordeel en uitgeroei word met wortel en tak.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

ANC en die ATKV gesels oor die plek van Afrikaans


Dis baie insiggewend dat die ATKV en die 'nuwe' ANC besig is om vir mekaar ogies te maak en nader na mekaar te skuif, na die Polokwane Rubicon. Die Beeld berig dat die twee organisasies met mekaar gesels oor groter samewerking.

Die Afrikaanse Taal en Kultuur Vereniging (ATKV) het uiteraard 'n tipe geskiedenis wat deel is van die groter komplekse storie van Afrikaans in Suid Afrika. Die feit dat kultuur en taal menigmale (en ook vandag nog onder die ANC) as 'n wapen in die ideologiese stryd opgeneem word om die heersersklas se posisie bestendig, het nie by die ATKV verby gegaan nie. Baie Afrikaanse bruinmense sou met reg skepties wees oor betrokkenheid by die ATKV juis vanwee hierdie rol en geskiedenis. Dinge is egter baie maal meer kompleks as wat dit mag lyk. Dit is veral so ten opsigte van taal en kultuur en in besonder die Afrikaanse taal. Hierop gaan ons nie op hierdie stadium in nie, maar wil dit bloot stel (asof ons dit nie weet nie) dat Afrikaans se ontstaan en ontwikkeling, as 'n Afrika-taal, ten diepste gewortel is in die konteks en ervaring van die kolonialisme in die slawekwartiere, aan die Kaap. In 'n post op Beyond Identity, The Purity of the Afrikaners, word gestel,
Also, the Afrikaans language spoken by Afrikaners, was actually originally spoken by slaves. Just like in the United States of America, where Black English or Ebonics developed from the broken English Southern dialect spoken by Black Americans, Afrikaans developed in the same way. The Afrikaans language, although Dutch based, absorbed many Khoikhoi, Malay, and Indian words. As white colonial children were raised by non-white slave mammies and had mixed-race children for playmates, one can see how the white settlers abandoned their Dutch language for Afrikaans instead. The very fact Cape Coloureds still speak Afrikaans, even though their ancestors did not participate in the Great Trek, shows that the language did not originate amongst the Voortrekkers, as Afrikaner white supremists claim. Cape Afrikaans (spoken by Coloureds) and Orange River Afrikaans (spoken by white Afrikaners), although baring dialectic differences, are similar enough to be regarded as the same language and mutually intelligible. Thus, Afrikaners ironically, speak a language with non-white origins.


Strenggesproke is die Afrikaanse taal en kultuur dus 'n produk van 'n unieke Afrika bricolage, maar en dit is die kritiese punt, wat op progressiewe wyse ontwikkel en voortwoeker, binne nuwe kontekste en onder nuwe heersers. Die poging tot opeis en ideologisering van hierdie rykgeskakeerde organiese proses, deur Afrikaner Nasionalisme, onder die Britse Empire en later die konsolidasie, onder Nasionale Party bewind het gelei tot ongekende ekonomiese welvaart en sosiale ontwikkeling in die wit gemeenskap, maar ook tot die doelbewuste verarming en politieke marginalisering van die bruinmense. Hierdie politieke magspel kon egter nie weerbarstigheid en lewenskragtigheid van Afrikaans onder bruinmense demp en uitdoof nie. Dit het voortgeleef ( ten spyte van grootskaalse verengelsing)in ons gemeenskappe, onder ons kinders in hulle hip hop (check out Prophets of Da City-POC, Black noise, BVK) en in ons politiek, opvoeding en godsdiens. Dit is om hierdie rede dat die herdefiniering van Afrikaanswees, en daarom van Afrikaans-gegronde instellings krities belangrik is in die ontwikkeling en heropbou van ons land, vandag. Die rol van bv 'n instelling soos, Stigting vir Bemagtiging deur Afrikaans, is sentraal in die transformasie en ontginning van bestaande instellings, ter wille van hierdie proses van herdefiniering. Soos die artikel in Die Beeld dan ook stel, is die kwessies van armoedebestryding en welvaartskepping op die tafel. Dit moet egter skerper belyn word: Die geselsies moet aangeknoop word met progressiewe mede Afrikaansprekendes (soos die span by SBA) en die begunstigdes in die prosesse moet bruinmense wees, bruin kinders wat op die plase en in die landelike dorpies, maar ook agtergebly het in die tradisioneel bruin lokasies en eenvoudig, Afrikaans leef. Die ANC (die huidige heersersklas) is egter nie so 'n sleutelrolspeler in die verband nie en sal uiteraard die proses stuur in die rigting van die beurse van die 'comrades'. Wat nodig is, is dat sleutelleiers, wat nog in voeling is met die community, wat hulself onderskei het in hul velde, hetsy, ekonomie, opvoeding, regsgeleerdheid, religie of sport en kultuur ernstig opgeneem word in die 'geselsies', oor taal en kultuur.

In die verband hou ons met groot belangstelling die ontwikkelinge in en deur die ATKV fyn dop, prof Hans du Plessis, maar meer nog, het die tyd aangebreek vir visionêre bruin leiers om, aan stuur van sake, Afrikaans te laat gedy in die publieke ruimtes.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Delft Symphony, die armstes moet die prys betaal in tente

Niemand kan ontken, die brandpunt rondom behuising is 'n komplekse saak. Die uitsprake van howe moet in die verband gerespekteer word en die rol van politici is menigmale meer van 'n probleem as 'n oplossing. En tog wonder mens of die dieper struggle werklikwaar aan die lig kom m.b.t. die gemors in Delft Symphony. Dit sal mens seker nooit weet nie.

Dit bly egter 'n skande in die Nuwe Suid Afrika, wanneer die mense wat desperaat soek na skuiling, veral in die lig van ons Minister van Finansies se aankondigings van 'n gesonde begrotingsoorskot, op straat of in tente woon. Vlugtelingskampe binne die nuwe Suid Africa, in Kaapstad. Dit terwyl Kaapstad beskou word as die mekka van toerisme in Suid-Afrika (en Afrika) en sekerlik besig is om hul vere reg te skud vir 2010. Die 'skoonmaak' van onsienlike 'squatter areas', is egter gewoonlik deel van die (ongepubliseerde) voorbereidings vir die wêreldskouspel, terwyl ons voortdurend herinner word aan die ekonomiese vooruitgang vir die gasheerland en -stede. Soortgelyke wêreld byeenkomste word gemeet aan die inkomstes en die skouspel van die 'beautiful game', maar die prys wat die armstes moet betaal deur nuwe 'forced removals' in die 'nuwe' Suid Afrika, word verswyg.

Kom ons gee 'n ander perspektief, uit die tent so to speak. Wanneer mense vir jare, geduldig op 'n waglys is, en geduldig hulle onderwerp aan burokratiese rondslomp en nog steeds en ten spyte daarvan, hulself beroep op die ('ons') demokraties verkose regering, maar dan skielik hoor iemand anders, wat nou die dag in die Kaap ingetrek het, staan voor in die ry, dan is daar moeilikheid. Wanneer die ontwikkelinge en voorbereidings van die Wereldbeker 2010, van hierdie mense verwag om, geduldig te wees, want, so hoor hulle, 'ons kom by julle uit', dan is daar iets wat besig is om te verrot in die moraliteit van die 'nuwe' Suid Afrika. Wanner nuwe stelsels, administrasie en nuwe vorms (in Engels nogal) konstant die doelpale skuif, dan is daar iets diepers aan die gang, 'n magspel waarbinne die armstes 'disposable nappies' word. Wanneer hierdie mense uiteindelik beland op die straat en in tente, soos vlugtelinge in hul eie land, dan is daar iets fout met die weegskale, veral Trevor Manuel, as daar van oorskotte te sprake is en die 'fundamentals' in plek is. Miskien moet ons eerder weer luister na wat Cosatu sê oor die surplusse, want in die 'nuwe' Suid Afrika skree dit ten hemele. Dit is 'n Suid Afrika waar sy eie arm mense, nogsteeds die prys moet betaal, in tente, terwyl die haar nuwe elite, by die Polokwane's, mekaar as comrade aanspreek en die hande gulsig vryf, vir die volgende Duitse vuurwa.

Miskien is dit dan geen wonder waarom die behuisingskwessie, soos dit manifesteer in Delft, so kompleks is nie. Die 'nuwe' Suid Afrika is kompleks.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

to pledge or not to pledge

In principle there should be no harm in our children making a pledge towards a common South African-ness. This is a good idea. Many have responded with concern over the content, others over the language, and others over the ideology behind it.

Whilst both Pres Mbeki and Me Pandor stressed that the content is up for debate, most of these reactions react to a supposed imposition on a highly diverse SA populace. The more appropriate question however seems to be: what are those values that bind us together, as South Africans and how do we package it, succinctly and on the level of our children. What make us unique and proud? Its here that the values of the constitution cuts across our differences, as the symbol of our national consensus (at least for now)

One thing we all, including our Prez etc have to remember, though is that we should not overestimate this little pledge in terms of what can achieve. As the flag, the anthem, and the constition itself, its value lies in the mythology and symbolism of representing the ideals we measure ourselves against and live for. As with the constitution, it also becomes the standard we call our leaders, including government towards, even where they are called to task.

Jake and Springboks are Laureus winners, but SARU insults De Villiers

What a stinker !
Whilst the Jake White and his stars have the world at their feet, SARU is at it again. This time SARU sees it fit to offer De Villiers a contract from hell, with , amongst other draconian clauses, a salary way beneath what White received. SARU seems to get it wrong every time we ascend the world stage, which leaves one wondering about a possible third force... This is a moment in the history of rugby where they could capitalize on the successes of Jake and the boys, in taking the game to the nation, in building a bigger pool of talent and supporters. Of course, such a boost will also make the sponsors smile. But no, like so many times before, they dropped the ball.

For many, rugby still represents the sentiments of the old SA. The visionary appointment of De Villiers has set the tone for a new era, where it seemed as if the tide was turning. Finally, all of us are valued and respected for our contribution, as it should have been all the time. Now, it seems, as if the coach of colour is not equally valued, irrespective of his credentials, irrespective of whether the world and potential supporters is viewing every move in South African rugby, with keen interest. Whilst White is grandstanding with his stars, with only one (confused ?) player of colour, on the front pages representing (South) Africa, the back pages are telling a different story, a story of humiliation and injustice. It's time for SARU's officials to start stand up and some-one need to stick their neck, for goodness sake. Its time to not only to grandstand, but to put the money where the mouth is and value our best in equal measure, irrespective of whether the person is White, coloured or black.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Xolela Mangcu , To the Brink


In a very interesting article, in The Star (13 Feb 2008), an extract from his book, To the Brink, Xolela Mangxu, Executice chair of the Platform for Public Deliberation, rips apart, the kind of 'racial nativism', that he finds currently in the political imaginations of the ANC, but also currently in South Africa.

What is this nativism ? He writes 'By its very nature racial nativism is exclusionary and inevitably leads to political intolerance, which has manifested through the racial labeling of political critics as traitors...'
This position he juxtaposes against, what he calls 'the long traditions of racial syncretism that have always characterized South African political and intellectual history'. Here 'natives' are all the people born in the country, irrespective of their struggle history or where they stand in relation to government. This sentiment echoes in the Freedom Charter, which unambigiously states, 'South Africa belongs to all who lives in it, black or white'. He describe the Pan Africanist leader Robert Sobukwe or Steven Biko as 'never racial essentalists'. Sobukwe states, 'When I say Africa is for the Africans I mean those of any colour, who accept Africa as their home....'

This book is indeed an essential read for all of us....

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

President Norman Arendse on the state of the (cricket) nation

Sport, for some, is a barometer of the state of the nation, maybe more than the recent blahblahblah speech last week Friday, somewhere in Capetown. Admittedly, this is taking the importance of sport too far, yet it does have an element of truth in it. Hence, when there is a spat between the President of CricketSA, Norman Arendse and our national cricket coach, Mickey Arthur, on team selection, then the true sentiments with regards to transformation (even beyond cricket) starts to surface. In the public domain, it has been said time and time again, there is no more any racists in South Africa. Even when a young white boy, in cold-blooded fashion, finish his traditional weapon on innocent poor black people, then 'skielik', the crime situation in SA is to blame-there is nothing such as racism-it doesn't (and most probably never exist). To make along story short, Norman Arends has however put his finger, not only on a sore point in cricket, but also on the rest of our country as well, namely the sophistication with which racism mask itself within the new SA. Lets be frank: Bruin/Black South Africans people are dissatisfied with the levels of transformation in cricket, on all levels of our society, yet we love the game and the team, winning. We can still conjure up the images of the nation saying goodbye to Sir Polly, especially the vibe in PE. There are great things happening in sport today.

Yes, let us commend new Stormers coach, Rassie Erasmus, in the team selection for Saturday's game against the Bulls. Rassie, this is not a vindication for Bruinmense in the Cape (you have too much of a maverick-hard headed streak in you), this is the affirmation of what has been argued so many times, here at BDF: transformation and excellence (or merit), is not opposites. If other coaches like you, can open their eyes and see the bigger pool of talent, form and flair then we all can have winning teams to be proud of. The argument of many who push this line (transformation or merit), at the root, departs from the racist notion that the appointment, nomination or election of any one other than a white person was on the basis of something other than merit, and therefor means the lowering of the standard- hence the counterargument for merit and excellence as the sole criteria. Should there be a bruin or black person, then it was not on the basis of merit, but on the basis of 'transformation' or 'politiek'. When a white player is chosen, then its on merit. When Rassie and the Stormers selectors however looked at the whole pool and found on form, 15 men in black/blue, where 6 is not white, then people start to get worried, he was pushed, he is bucking under 'political' pressure. Well, he didn't, he simply enlarged the pool he can draw from, which gives him more options. He tried combinations with practice games against weaker teams, to blood new talent into the system. He was willing to widen his horizons.

On the other hand, we have national coaches, who don't look at the broader, the whole pool and with 'oogklappe' only see what they've been conditioned to see. It is at this point that brave administrators, have to pull out and uphold those lofty ideals that we've agreed upon during unification. Norman Arendse is one of them. All that we as a sport-loving nation are to expect from Norman is to keep the vision of a transformed, inclusive and representative pool of form and talent in front of Mickey Arthur. Between you and me, Prez Norman, maybe some-one like Gibbs, need to the time off to find his form, if ever again. You're right, Monde Zondeki should have been included, so should have been Charl Langeveld, great to see Robin Petersen, back in the pool again, but we need to development, broaden and keep pointing to the bigger pool. Keep it up Norman !