Browsing Tag

xenophobia

Succulent flowers in my garden

Feeling South Africa’s Pain

Back in the olden days, I often used this blog as a vessel for my grief and sadness. I went through a lot of tangible pain in the early 2Summers years — losing a partner to addiction, among other things — and the blog was one of my coping mechanisms. (You can find those old posts under the grief hashtag — scroll back to the early ones.) As the years wore on I blogged more about having fun in Joburg and South Africa than I did about pain and grief. My life got happier, and my blog became more popular as a resource for things to do and places to travel to. I took the ball and ran with it. I’ve loved Joburg and South Africa since the day I arrived here, and expressing that love through upbeat, informative blog posts came naturally. I’ve received so many wonderful messages from people who have used this blog to get to know Joburg and South Africa. People thank me for my optimism — for showing them the “good side” of this city and this country. I’m incredibly grateful for those messages and I’m grateful I discovered a path that allows me to […]

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Some Thoughts on Xenophobia in South Africa

For the past week, news headlines in South Africa have been dominated by reports of xenophobic violence — attacks perpetrated by South African citizens against South African immigrants. The attacks started in Durban and later spread to Johannesburg. At first, I read these stories with the detached sadness reserved for bad news that doesn’t directly affect me. But the stories got worse and the violence moved closer to home. Foreign-owned shops were attacked and looted in Jeppestown, a part of Joburg that I visit frequently. A refugee camp sprouted at a church on the East Rand. My Instagram feed filled with photos of police clashes, broken glass, burning cars, and tent cities. Yesterday morning a Mozambican man named Emmanuel Sithole was brutally beaten, clubbed, stabbed, and killed on the street in Alexandra Township. Two Sunday Times journalists witnessed the killing. Here’s the story about it, but please note that the photos are graphic beyond words. Yesterday morning I woke up before sunrise to attend an Instawalk on a rooftop in Braamfontein. It was foggy and freezing cold, but still beautiful. The streets of downtown Joburg were quiet and peaceful. My friends and I went for breakfast at a café in Braamfontein, like we would on any other Saturday. […]

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