Monday, September 19, 2011

Remembering Black Consciousness

This is the month Steve Biko died, quite a few years ago now. I have also been writing a section on Black Theology for my thesis (limit 1500 words, eish!) So I have many thoughts churning around my head about black consciousness. Perhaps this is a cop out - but here is some stuff that is relevant because it's recent, or because it has stuck with me over a few months.
First a quote from Antjie Krog in 'Country of My Skull' as I have put it in my thesis:

Antjie Krog reports on an interview with an unnamed black author which gives life to the concept of black solidarity. She was asking him about a part of his book where a murder has occurred and someone has reported the murderers.

“Why does your main character condemn the splitter and not the murderers?”
“Because black people must always stick together.”
“But the woman who saw a white man running away from Chris Hani’s dead body didn’t say, ‘He was white, so I’ll shut up.’ She said, ‘The deed is wrong, so I’ll speak out.’”
He looks at me. “No one can destroy whites – they have survival in their bones. But for us, if we don’t stand together no matter what, we’ll be wiped out.” (2009: 12)

Second, an article by Khaya Dlanga. He doesn't call it black consciousness - but this strikes me as a from the heart explanation that I can identify with (even if my skin colour is all wrong!)
Why Black Folk Don't Vote DA

The real reason most black people won’t vote for the DA is because they want to fix their problems for themselves. They don’t want to feel like they need a white person to solve their problems for them. If they allow the DA to take over, this is what it will feel like, “We can’t do it for ourselves, let’s let the white people fix this for us.”
Third an article by a young student, Zama Ndlovu, who is discovering black consciousness. I feel she is confused - many white people are educated and successful, but that doesn't mean that education and success are 'white things'. But perhaps I misunderstand.
My Consciousness is Not Up For Discussion

Another young person, fellow blogger Cobus van Wyngaard has challenges as a young Afrikaner trying to 'live' black consciousness. I identify with his struggles.
How Good White People Keep White Superiority in It's Place.
Roger Saner has had similar posts, but I couldn't find the one I had in mind.

Another blogger Steve Hayes - shares my views on the virtues of non-racial thinking.  Whiteness, Whiteliness and White Studies.

. . . might be funny, but it also shows that “white liberal” has become a racist stereotype like “lazy kaffir” and “devious coolie”, and I’m not sure that racist stereotypes are all that funny in a society where too many people still take them seriously and believe them.
And just to mention Tinyiko Maluleke's level-headed approach from his post today.

Closing with words from Black Theologian Simon Maimela (also in my thesis):

Black Theology contends that it is as people candidly face the racial factors that breed alienation and conflict that they will be open to the transformative power of the gospel, which will lead whites and blacks to acquire qualitatively new ways of becoming human in their relationships to one another.

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