Words, Visions, Dreams, Voices of an African Woman Expressed by Thulisa Qangule
As we enter the first quadrant of the #16days of# Activism against all sorts of ills that# Women,# Children, and Generally Vulnerable Individuals and Groups throughout this globe…
I placed very little thought on whether or not# South Africans in my age-group(not quite the ‘Born-Frees’);would support this campaign. This age-group comprises of people who:
-Were alive and in school at the greatest heights of the State Of Emergency;
-Were first introduced to a teacher and a classroom in their first language and transition-Ed to multi-racial schools later,and some…even much later than;
-Lived through that era of uncertainty about which direction the winds of our political climate would take;
-Grew up with one parent at home and another in political incarceration;
-Witnessed colleagues,classmates,neighbours,and even strangers going through fears and indulging in ‘stock-piling’ ahead of the ’94 elections;
-Were part of the heart and soul of South Africa when blue and white flags went up to the skies, reminding us to look to the brighter future ahead;
-Have families that were torn apart as relatives were lost and never returned home and some…to this day have had no closure;
-Grew up protected,and even though residents and citizens of this country,only read about,heard about The Struggle from secondary sources;
-We all hope are educating themselves about the world around them,not only for purposes of entertainment,but for purposes of becoming global citizens at these times that the world’s become a ‘Global Village’;
We have advanced? Perhaps this was just a fragment of my imagination.
We have the Internet,Cable Television,Newspapers,Magazines- at the click of a button in some affluent parts of this country and even in the most remote parts, I am still amazed at how knowledgeable some people are…
Have never failed to acknowledge the Great and Sacrificial Work Done by the generations that precede mine.
Have never failed to wonder where I may have landed up,or if I would have even made it, had I been born circa 1940-70 for what it took for people of colour in those days to survive Greatly Eclipses what it takes for a lot of us in THIS generation of ‘Not-Quite-Born-Frees-But-Almost’.
A great number of our people managed to get through school with no electricity, no internet, no laptops, no access to extra classes and mentorship programmes, some with no school shoes on their feet.
Many lived lives in rural outskirts,in Townships, on their grand parents’ pension grants.
Some of these people are Senior Managers, Shareholders,Poloticians,Ambassadors,Sportspeople,Beacons of Hope and Inspiration for us all.
It has taken years of self and collective sacrifice…
I must intercept my thoughts by adding that a great number of the circumstances stated above still remain a challenging reality for a great number of people in this country,this continent,this globe,this planet that we are all citizens of…Today.
We crossed over eMzansi – Yes!
Without a War and there are many reasons and many people that contributed to this.
The political tools shared.
The never ceasing to give up spirit.
The many voices that rose up.
The many voices that spoke up.
The many minds that thought up.
The many people that Never
At whatever level you choose to look at it…
That was #Activism in Motion.
It set the wheels of destiny in Motion.
Let us please never forget.
There is also a great thing aside from Politics that I like to refer to as #Artivism©
I think what really got me to understand as an 8year old,exactly where we were in History,was a movie titled ‘CRY FREEDOM’ (this is not a movie review)
It did enough to educate me about the likes of Stephen Bantubonke Biko
It got me to question further
Hearing music by Harry Belafonte and Miriam Makeba was enough to make me understand there was an issue
I need not have articulated what the issue was back then
But I knew
Picking up books like: ‘I write what I like’ + ‘Let My People Go’;
Watching TV and seeing images of crowds of people marching through the streets;
Walking to the store to buy bread and seeing ‘Mellow Yellows’ on the streets;
Nights that were unsafe as crowds gathered and songs were sung and tension thicker than steel was felt in the atmosphere;
These things were also accompanied by momentum picked up through the rising awareness via the use of stage plays like Sarafina!
Concerts dedicated to the Freedom of this country became an increasing thing…a fashion statement of sorts.
Slowly but surely came to Awareness and nobody could afford to deny that South Africa had a problem to address and resolve.
Today, a man slung words laced with Profanity.
of This Generation
A South African Citizen
These verbal swords were aimed at the #16 days of Activism.
I have said it over and over again…
‘Our Economy hasn’t yet reached a point where we can afford Ignorance’
Perhaps I’m a broke African Woman and this item-Ignorance might be very affordable
Lord know I have dug deeper than deep and I cannot find the Rands nor currency low enough to afford such.
Not when we hear about children being raped;
Not when too many of our sisters
In THIS generation
Are themselves or are froends of or
Related to someone who has been raped or molested in THIS lifetime
In THIS generation
Not when many of us
Cannot walk our streets free of fear
At any given time of the day
Cannot trust men enough to let them
Into their hearts and homes
Not when too many hearts are bleeding
Not when entire communities are ready to go out and kill people for they have reached THAT level of Anger
Am I going to sit back
To f… The #16 days of activism.
Rise up and be aware,lest we go through yet another state of emergency in this country and unnecessarily so.
To every single person
Dead or Alive
Old or Young
Educated or Uneducated
Male or Female
Black or White and/or in between
Fat of Skinny
Tall or Short
Stupid or Intelligent
Scientist or Artist
Believer or Non-Believer
And any other combination
Of opposites that you’re going to find
Who has given their time,energy,thought, prayer,action,words,money,and any otherwise un-stated method of contributing positively to ‘Jive Activism’ and especially in the African Diasphora…
*I bow. I thank You*
Words are NOT enough!
This here is the new state of Emergency My Good People
Don’t be complacent and apathetic
GET WITH IT!
The below image captures the spirit in which this door was opened for us in the 1950s, in 2013…Let’s please…
Swiftly walk right on through
And keep this very key ingredient
That has made our nation what it is
In that magic pot
That cooks out miracles from time
In this instance…November-December 2013
Written by Thulisa Qangule – November 2013©