Mphutlane Wa Bofelo


While leader of the Democratic Alliance Helen Zille and leader of the Independent Democrats Patricia de Lille have announced that they will work together, Mphutlane wa Bofelo asks why the South African left can’t find areas of agreement instead of squabbling over differences.


Cheating in global sporting arenas such as the World Cup not only brings down the ‘beautiful game’, it also sends negative shock waves to the world’s spectators who lay witness to the prevail of deceit, writes Mphutlane wa Bofelo. The values of society will lose their gravity as notoriously deliberate offences on the field are attributed to the divine ‘hand of God’ with little or no retribution, warns Bofelo.

Shine 2010

Inspired by the atmosphere both at the World Cup in South Africa and at the Cup of Cultures in Berlin, Mphutlane wa Bofelo sees ‘the possibilities for the development of national, continental and international identities, rooted in the acknowledgement and the celebration of diversity as well as the interconnectedness of humanity and the universality of human experiences.’ But, says wa Bofelo, ‘we cannot expect a one-off event like the World Cup to work like a magic wand and spontaneously more


Not only did the Soweto uprising mark a radical shift in consciousness, it also sparked a renaissance in black South African cultural creativity, writes Mphutlane wa Bofelo. While in the 80s and 90s, ‘literature, theatre and the arts were an integral part of political work and writers and artists were visible and audible in political spaces and platforms’, argues Bofelo, today the arts ‘have been marginalised’ by the ‘pop culture which is utilised by the political establishment to more


The recent murder of Eugene Terreblanche, founder of the white supremacist Afrikaner Resistance Movement, should have focused the attention of the world on the exploitative, oppressive and de-humanising conditions of the landless peasants and farm workers in South Africa, writes Mphutlane wa Bofelo. But it’s easier for the country’s elites to blame racism alone for the incident than to acknowledge the historic links between race and class dynamics and to tackle the disparities that these more


Muslims who condemn women’s rights and gender equity often ignore the validity and legitimacy of the many issues feminism addresses, even though a number of the causes are compatible with the Islamic call towards justice for all, writes Mphutlane wa Bofelo. The usual message from the pulpit is that ‘Islam provides rights to women, but it is men who dispense these rights’, says wa Bofelo. It seems, however, that for many males ‘modesty and chastity has little to do with God and the integrity more


Freedom songs ‘speak to the pertinent issues of the time, expose the excesses and injustices of the system and the comfortable beneficiaries and supporters of the system, and point to the type of society the people envisage and the means to attain it,’ writes Mphutlane wa Bofelo. That is why South Africa’s new political elite is ‘stunting’ the ‘creative imagination and revolutionary rhythm by harping on “yesterday's” songs’, says Bofelo, so that it can deflect the growing anger among the more

I Philip

Mphutlane wa Bofelo mourns a South Africa in which critical thinking, thoughtful strategy and creative minds are marginalised. What is reified instead, he argues, is thoughtless action, the dismissal of theory and analysis and ‘the racist, sexist, violent-peddling hate-talk of Julius Malema’. Wa Bofelo holds that the lionisation of rash and unthinking youths in the past has led to a culture of crime and violence, disrespect for life and intolerance for dissent in South Africa. The media and more


Nelson Mandela’s 1990 statement on nationalisation sparked uproar from big business, but there’s little sign of private sector anxiety following ANC Youth League President Julius Malema’s recent call for the formation of state-owned mines. There’s only one explanation for the ‘relatively muted response’, says Mphutlane wa Bofelo – that ‘after 15 years of ANC government, the owners of capital now know that the radical leftist terminology that the ANC uses is just a rhetorical spin to sell more

president sexmachine
runs out of semen
calls in juju magic
to foster a son like
father like pornstar
overzealous the heir
strips in public
it is not the clothes
that are off but the mind
the naked head gives
another meaning to nudity
groupies throw not their undies in the air
but their brains out of their heads
the hearts are locked
in the wallets
the bluenotes woke up everybody
the blandnotes more