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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Icons of the old regime: challenging South African public memory strategies in #RhodesMustFall
Authors:Holmes, Carolyn E.
Loehwing, Melanie
Year:2016
Periodical:Journal of Southern African Studies (ISSN 1465-3893)
Volume:42
Issue:6
Pages:1207-1223
Language:English
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:monuments
memory
colonial period
students
protest
commemorations
Link:https://doi.org/10.1080/03057070.2016.1253927
Abstract:Students engaged in the spring 2015 protests on the University of Cape Town campus demanded the removal of the statue of Cecil John Rhodes, prompting renewed debate over the appropriate treatment of colonial and apartheid-era statuary in contemporary South African public spaces. While the students' protests were often dismissed in public discourse and media coverage as misguided or misinformed, this article situates them in the broader context of symbolic reparations central to the transition to multiracial democracy. We introduce the terms 'monologic commemoration' and 'multiplicative commemoration' to describe the two dominant phases of South African public memory initiatives during and after apartheid. Monologic commemoration promotes a singular historical narrative of national identity and heroic leadership, whereas multiplicative commemoration requires the representation of as many diverse experiences and viewpoints as possible. We examine the #RhodesMustFall campaign as an eruption of discontent with both the monologic and multiplicative approaches, potentially signalling a new 'post-transitional' phase of South African public culture. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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