Shushing, speaking, politicians, policing
2014-03-18

 
Prof Pumla Dineo Gqola
Photo: Michelle Nothling

Feminist writer, scholar and previous Kovsie staff member, Prof Pumla Dineo Gqola, recently launched her book at the Bloemfontein Campus. “A Renegade Called Simphiwe” explores the life – and controversy – of singer Simphiwe Dana.

The book tells the story of Dana, a rebellious artist and cultural activist. But it also delves much deeper – into the fabric of our society itself. It questions our expectations and reactions to the things that make us shift in our seats.

The politics of silencing
Artists should not involve themselves in politics. They should stick to what they’re good at. Dana and other artists know this silencing finger being waved at them all too well. It is this mentality that alarms Prof Gqola. “I’m very disturbed by the notion of policing our – especially female – artists.” She pointed out that it is mostly female artists in SA who are put under scrutiny, reigned in and censored. Not only by politicians, though. Our public also quickly steps in when an artist seems to step out of ‘their place’.

The proper place of art
“I’m part of the movement that believes art transforms,” said Prof Gqola. South Africa used to be a fertile ground for protest art. This had an immense impact on political and social transformation. “Then something happened,” Prof Gqola let the words linger. “The arts got divorced from its social transformative power.”

Why has art been publically marginalised?

The question remains.


FACULTY CONTACT

T: +27 51 401 2240 or humanities@ufs.ac.za

Postgraduate:
Marizanne Cloete: +27 51 401 2592

Undergraduate:
Katlego Mabulana: +27 51 401 2495
Juanita Hlongwane: +27 51 401 3269

Humanities photo next to contact block

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful, to better understand how they are used and to tailor advertising. You can read more and make your cookie choices here. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept