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18 April 2019 | Story Rulanzen Martin

The Institute for Reconciliation and Social Justice IRSJ) has initiated a Social Justice Week at the University of the Free State (UFS), which started on Friday 12 April  until Wednesday 17 April 2019. 

Ten key events took place during the week. It ranged from dialogues, workshops, talk shows, debates, and interactive displays and events on issues of multilingualism and diversity, social innovation, engaged scholarship, the Fourth Industrial Revolution, gender sensitisation, sexual consent, sexual preparedness, universal access, disability, anti-discrimination, and security.

There was also a round-table discussion on 17 April 2019 with various UFS stakeholders on off-campus student security as well as an inter-institutional discussion on the same topic. The UFS Debating Society will take on the topic of the UFS Language Policy, while Olga Barends from the Free State Centre for Human Rights will host a dialogue on sexual consent.

The IRSJ has also designed and implemented SOJO-VATION: Social Innovation/ Social Change, which strives to create a foundational platform where ideas of social justice, innovation, and engaged scholarship at the UFS and in society can be hosted. SOJO-VATION partners with the Office for Student Leadership, Development, and Community Engagement.

The collaborating partners for the Social Justice Week includes various UFS stakeholders such as the Sasol library, the Gender and Sexual Equity Office, UFS Protection Services, the Free State Centre for Human Rights, the Student Representative Council (SRC), the Office for Student Leadership Development, Kovsie Innovation, GALA, the FFree State Centre for Human Rights, SRC Associations, the Office for Student Governance, Kovsie Innovate, Start-Up-Grind, EVC, EBL, Community Engagement, the Institutional Transformation Plan (ITP) Dialogues Office, Residence Dialogues, UFS Debating Society, Debate Afrika!, the Center for Universal Access and Disability Support (CUADS), and the Gateway Office. 

News Archive

Prestigious Helgaard Steyn Prize to be awarded to UFS composer
2010-11-08

 Hans Huyssen.

The composer Hans Huyssen, affiliated with the Department of Music at the University of the Free State (UFS), is to be the current recipient of the prestigious 2010 Helgaard Steyn Prize, the prize-winning work being Huyssen’s Proteus Variations (2006).Annually this award is administered and presented to a selected composer, painter, author, or sculptor by the Universities of the Free State and the North-West on a rotating basis. The judges for this year’s prize were Prof. Bertha Spies, Research Fellow, North-West University, and Professor Extraordinary, University of Pretoria, and Mr Noel Stockton, Senior Lecturer at the University of the Free State.

Hans Huyssen’s musical activities encompass the diverse poles of early and contemporary Western and African music, often in an attempt to assimilate the essential qualities from all these fields. His intense focus on contextuality suggests that he approaches music as a profoundly social force which has a particular role to play in our ‘new’ diversified South African society.

The Proteus Variations were commissioned by the Deutsche Welle Radio for the South African National Youth Orchestra 2006, and were premiered at the Beethoven Bonn Festival during 2006. These variations are described by the composer as “a musical representation of South Africa’s manifold Proteaceae”, named for the Greek god Proteus who, at will, was capable of assuming a spectrum of shapes and appearances. As the composer states: “It is worth noticing that a Protea is South Africa’s national flower. What could be more appropriate in providing a key to an opposite perception and understanding of the country’s diverse cultural expressions? In this regard it is my hope that the Proteus Variations may contribute a little to the wide scope of cultural responses necessary to begin to do justice to the extremely rich tapestry of our immediate cultural and natural surroundings”.

The prize of R170 000 will be awarded to Hans Huyssen by a representative of ABSA Trust, who is one of the trustees of the Helgaard Steyn Trust, in Bloemfontein on 8 November 2010.

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