The Second Man: An autobiography concerning a sense of belonging – 1

I arrived back in South Africa in October 2008. My mother died that year and a three-year relationship had just ended. While I was on holiday in South Africa in January I had walked into my mother’s bedroom to find her dead. We carried her out of the house. I did some form of CPR but it was hopeless. I went to see her body … Continue reading The Second Man: An autobiography concerning a sense of belonging – 1

4 Books on Violence – Camus, Arendt, Fanon & Zizek

1.The Rebel – Albert Camus Camus’s The Rebel (L’Homme Révolté) was famously panned by Sartre and his friends in the periodical Le Temps Moderne.  In the published exchanges that ensued Camus was, it is often said, defeated in the rhetorical joust.  Even Tony Judt, a great admirer of Camus, said: ‘In L’Homme Révolté (1951) Camus offered some important observations about the dangers of lyrical revolutionary illusions; … Continue reading 4 Books on Violence – Camus, Arendt, Fanon & Zizek

The South Africa of the Mind

I was, while walking through Glasgow, listening to the audiobook of Tony Judt’s Reappraisals – a collection of essays largely written for the New York Review of Books.  It is a book that changed my mind on many things not least on Israel and Palestine but also thankfully on Judt’s friend Edward Said.  This is not to say that I have changed my mind on Said’s, I believe, … Continue reading The South Africa of the Mind

Where I Stand 24/05/2016

With all of the Frantz Fanon worship going around I thought that I would finally read The Wretched of the Earth cover-to-cover – rather than just dealing with the chapters one is dished out at universities.  Having just got through that incendiary horse manure that Sartre placed at the front of it, the experience is going well, although I do not agree with his Hegelian inspired dialectical … Continue reading Where I Stand 24/05/2016

Where I Stand 12/05/2016

Having rejoined Facebook the world seems to be a darker place.  I say this because everybody seems to have become more intolerant and more radicalised in their positions.  Of course it is only social media.  One person who used to ‘hate’ me on Facebook and accuse me of ghastly political positions was very different when I met her in person at a gallery. In real life … Continue reading Where I Stand 12/05/2016

Where I Stand 26/04/2016

I have always been afraid of reading Albert Camus’s The Rebel mainly because most commentators have suggested that it is philosophically weak and I have not wanted to face up to the weakness of the writer who I trust and admire the most.  I read parts of it many years ago but only with one eye open fearing the worst.    I have now started giving it a closer … Continue reading Where I Stand 26/04/2016