Siyakhumbula Ngabafazi Bethu: Memorying The Everyday Through Race And Gender In South African Post-Apartheid Cinema And Visual Culture
The title of my thesis uses a combination of Zulu and English. I have chosen to use Zulu in the first part to assert and insert race and women as important foci of the thesis. I also use the Zulu formulation as a way of paying homage to the now famous slogan, ‘Wathint’abafazi, wathint’imbokodo’, which means ‘when you strike a woman, you strike a rock’. The phrase has been memorialised in relation to the 1956 women’s march against apartheid and still today, carries currency and strength.
This thesis aims to analyse the representations of race and memory in post-apartheid South African films. Within the large category of race, I will focus specifically on the representations of Black women, as the topic is under developed within scholarship. This thesis aims to contribute to a critical discussion about transformation in South Africa, through paying attention to the representations of the everyday. It aims to offer new critiques of the representations of race and memory, through considering the missing gaps in scholarship and cultural products like film that, in my hypothesis, seek to promote homogenous, neat and uncritical representations about South Africans for South African and other audiences.