|Africa, Articles, New Media, Philosophy, Social Science, South Africa on 2013-03-25 18:32Z by Steven|
thesis eleven: critical theory and historical sociology
Volume 115, Number 1 (April 2013)
Gerhard Maré, Professor of Sociology
University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa
Despite a constitutional and oft-stated political commitment to an undefined notion of non-racialism, South Africans continue to operate in formal and informal ways with ‘race’ as the common-sense organizing principle of legal systems, ways of thinking, social identities, constructing arguments or closing debate, organizational and mobilizing strategies, policy development and execution, and interaction in daily life. This state of affairs is regrettable and dangerous, often questioned and rejected, but objections are waged and alternatives suggested against the tide of societal trends. What the organizing principle of race thinking does is to close the mind to alternative possibilities – of thought, social practice and ways of living. Here I explore an overview of racialism as it permeates and shapes the life cycles of citizens from birth to death. I make an argument for a way of thinking that is necessarily utopian, as one of few options of escaping a social world made in the image of apartheid.
Read or purchase the article here.