Nation-building, community-building…or pulling down statues?

On Mandela day…each year, I wonder what that strong, determined, visionary and unifying leader would have to say about our country now? South Africa has no strong, easily discernible or well-articulated Nation-building myths left for the disparate communities to gather around for much flag-waving and cheering… And from what I am hearing of late, they…

What is in our hands – can we change the world ? 

To answer as simply as possible, we can start making a difference in our world – NOW and with what is already in our hands.  “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing” – Edmund Bourke A lifelong pursuit of these questions – I have read so many…

silence please…

   can we have a minute of silence for the thousands of drowned refugees – yes, all of them – not just the toddler whose body washed up on a beach and captured the attention of many… for a few days… also, a minute of silence for all of those thousands who will continue to make the crossing,…

Nation-building, community-building…and the Anzac myth

Imagine with me for a moment, that Nation-building could be the intentional and thoughtful building of a positive, inclusive, visionary, peaceful and sustainable vision of and for our Nation (a sort of meta-community, made of many communities). In other words, a Nation-building ‘myth’ at best, is a ‘STORY’ about who we all are, where we…

Sydney ‘siege’, and scattered thoughts on ‘terror’

Some scattered thoughts on ‘terror’ this week in the aftermath of the Sydney ‘siege’ – when people were held hostage for 16 hours in a cafe in the city by a man claiming links to IS (‘Islamic State’) – closely followed by a horrific massacre of 145 school children in Peshawar, Pakistan by the Taliban….

Hope for Africa

Africa is often seen as a ‘hopeless continent’ – in political and economic discussions a certain tone is adopted, which is patronising and mostly assumes the worst. As if somehow African countries, and African people, are facing issues particular to that part of the world – issues that cannot or will not be resolved due…

Dulce et decorum est…

It’s 530am. An amplified voice booms across our usually quiet suburb. Its still pitch dark. I wasn’t sleeping properly anyway, but I find the noise irritating. It takes me a few moments to realise- Anzac Day services… Ahh, right. Here we go again. Soon comes the music too- so like the sloooooow, off key hymns…

Fear is the real enemy

A few years ago I realised that since my childhood I had believed I would not live past my 30s or 40s. This unquestioned assumption was not actually a morbid belief that I would die ‘before my time’ though – it was a product of growing up in the 80s, when media/ music industry campaigns like…

Mind the (gender) gap

Boys and girls are different. From the start. Certain biological differences cannot be denied, and these certainly guide our development, our perception of the world, and our identities. But current gender stereotypes are restrictive, limiting, one-dimensional, boring… and even in some cases harmful. My main point here is that parents (and society in general) go…