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SU alumnus wows audienceshttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3419SU alumnus wows audiencesWayne Muller<p>An alumnus of Stellenbosch University (SU), the actor Marlo Minnaar, will perform in the acclaimed one-man show, <em>Santa Gamka</em>, in the Baxter Theater in Rondebosch, Cape Town, from Monday, 1 February.</p><p>The piece is based on Eben Venter's novel by the same name, and Minnaar reworked it into a theatre play himself. He is also the producer.</p><p><em>Santa Gamka</em> received the Kanna Awards for Best Debut Work, the Herrie Prize for Best Ground-breaking Work and for Best Director (Jaco Bouwer) at the 2015 Klein Karoo National Arts Festival (KKNK). </p><p>Marlo Minnaar was also nominated for Best Actor for his performance as Lucky Marais. The production also received three KykNET Fiësta nominations – for Best Solo Performance, Best Newly-created Afrikaans Production, and Best Director. (Winners will be announced in February.)</p><p>In recent years Minnaar was seen in productions such as <em>Blood Brothers</em>, <em>Balbesit</em> and <em>Die Kortstondige Raklewe van Anastasia W.</em> </p><p><em>Santa Gamka</em> tells the story of a young coloured man from the Karoo, who navigates his way through life in a rather unusual way. Driven by his fear not to fall back into poverty, he becomes a rent boy.</p><p>Lucky tells the audience about his seven greatest adventures – better known as his seven customers: a woman who lost her son in a car accident, the mistress of the local hotel owner and olive farmer, his high school English teacher, the municipal manager, the farmer and his father's employer who continues to oppress Lucky's parents, his aunt, as well as a young German man.</p><p>However, his white lies start catching up with him and he finds himself in a furnace of hell. Suddenly the Karoo has become too hot for him. His time is up. He only has seven minutes left to live and he is now faced with the dilemma of having to review his short life.</p><ul><li><em>Santa Gamka</em> is performed in Afrikaans in the Baxter Theatre's Golden Arrow Studio from 1 to 19 February at 20:15 daily.</li></ul>
Arts alumnus’ illustrations gives South African take on traditional Bible storieshttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3461Arts alumnus’ illustrations gives South African take on traditional Bible storiesLynne Rippenaar-Moses<p>​<em style="line-height:1.6;text-align:justify;">​Marie Prinsloo (photo), an alumnus of the Visual Arts Department, recently illustrated her first children's book, a children's Bible named </em><span style="line-height:1.6;text-align:justify;">Bible Stories for Children,</span><em style="line-height:1.6;text-align:justify;"> which was narrated by Wendy Maartens and published by Random House/Struik. Lynne Rippenaar-Moses spoke to her about how she got involved in this project and the road she walked from Stellenbosch University graduate to full-time artist, exhibiting in various galleries across the Western Cape.</em></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong><em>Question: You've just illustrated your first children's book, a children's Bible by Wendy Maartens that was published by Random House/Struik. How did you access this great opportunity and how does it feel like to have your first illustrated book on shop shelves?</em></strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong>Answer:</strong> Wendy Maartens and I had a great conversation during her interview with me for <em>Lig </em>magazine – I think it was two years ago. We just clicked and kept in touch. They were looking for a new flavour for the illustrations for her children's Bible, and she recommended me. Apparently, the powers that be liked the way I use colour and texture. Of course it was super exciting to get the project.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">What made the experience even better was that Wendy was closely involved with the illustrations. For instance, she gave me a list of flowers, plants and animals she wanted to have in the illustrations. She had lovely morning glories in front of her window, for example, and another time she was surrounded by red poppies. Another week, pelicans caught her eye, then sugarbirds and cosmos. This helped to make the book a very personal project.</p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong><em>Q: What did you study at Stellenbosch University and why did you decide to follow that specific degree programme above all other programmes offered here?</em></strong></p><p>I chose the painting side of the degree because I love painting and drawing. I'm not very fond of computers, so that cancelled out graphic design, and I am also not meticulous enough for jewellery design. So, painting was the only one left.</p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong><em>Q: Did this degree in anyway prepare you for your current career and if it did, could you tell us how? </em></strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The course did not fully prepare me for what I do today. For instance, we were not taught at all how to market our art and that sort of thing. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">What I can say, is that Paul Emsley is a brilliant lecturer and artist, and I learned a lot during the three years of attending his drawing classes. He gave practical advice and his work is outstanding.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">There was also a lithography lecturer, Lyne, who was also a children's book illustrator. One day she brought the pre-sketches for a book to class and showed us the layout. It made a big impression on me.</p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong><em>Q: Tell us more about the book itself – for example, what makes it different from other children's Bibles on bookstore shelves? </em></strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">This Bible is different from other children's Bibles, as there is a lot of humour and freedom in the text. It has a light approach and is more contemporary. In the story of the Samaritan, for example, a gang of hooligans jump on him from behind a bush and the Samaritan then takes him to a guesthouse.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">We also purposefully used authentic South African symbols in the illustrations. Proteas, heather, meerkats, pincushions and sugarbirds, that kind of thing. Also, in Noah's story, I showed the ark drifting with Table Mountain under the water.</p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong><em>Q. Many students at times become disillusioned after completing a BA degree as the public perception is often that any qualified artist will end up struggling to make ends meet anyway. What has your own experience been like and what kind of advice would you give to students studying towards a BA Visual Arts degree today? </em></strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Yes, you definitely need a day job if you want to survive as an artist. A day job relieves the pressure and gives you the freedom to express yourself, without continuously making things you hope would sell. Then you paint from the heart, with passion, and that is wonderful. I paint full-time and exhibit my work at various galleries. I also present art classes and in-between I do illustrations for books and websites.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Your marketing should be done the right way from the start. I was not aware of these things, such as marketing yourself, and I did all sorts of other things along the way. All of this has an influence on one's art, but in the past students were not really prepared for surviving with their degree. I'm sure it is different now.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">It is also wise to do a marketing course with your art qualification. It totally goes against one's nature as an artist, but you cannot simply sit back and paint and hope people will fall over their feet to buy your art. It entails hard work and tough marketing, and growing a thick skin and doing admin. A lot of admin! You should see it as a business and get your art to the right market. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Bible is available at most large bookshops and sells at R155. It is published by Penguin Random House. Locally it can be bought online through Exclusive Books (<a href="http://www.exclusives.co.za/">www.exclusives.co.za</a>) and internationally through Takealot.</p><p>To read more about Marie, visit <a href="http://www.marieprinsloo.co.za/">www.marieprinsloo.co.za</a>. </p><p><strong>CONTACT US</strong></p><p>Alumni from the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences make a huge impact in various sph eres of South African society and the world. We  enjoy celebrating your achievements and hearing about the paths you have taken since leaving our institution.</p><p>So, if you know of any alumni or if you are an alumnus who has recently excelled, please send a short para graph explaining the alumnus/your achievement as well as the contact details of that alumnus/yourself to our Communications and PR Officer, <a href="mailto:lynnr@sun.ac.za">Ms Lynne Rippenaar-Moses</a>. <span style="line-height:1.6;">We will feature a short Q and A with one of our alumni each month.</span></p>
Alumnus investigates "challenges in journalism education and training"http://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3491Alumnus investigates "challenges in journalism education and training"Lynne Rippenaar-Moses<p>​Dr Bevelyn Dube graduated with a PhD degree in Journalism from Stellenbosch University (SU) in December 2013. Prior to receiving her degree, she presented some of the research contained in her thesis at the 3rd World Journalism Education Congress (WJEC) in Belgium. Her paper, which focused on Transformation of journalism education and training in post-1994 South Africa: The challenges, was selected as the runner-up for the best paper presented at the conference. Lynne Rippenaar-Moses spoke to her about her research and the contribution it will make to scholarship in South Africa. ​​<br></p><div><p><strong>​QUESTION:</strong> Could you tell me what you currently do and why you decided to pursue a PhD in Journalism at Stellenbosch University?</p><p><strong>ANSWER:</strong> I am currently a lecturer in the Department of Communication and Applied Language Studies at the University of Venda, in Thohoyandou, Limpopo Province. I chose to do my PhD in Journalism with Stellenbosch University because of the excellent reputation they have of producing quality journalism graduates. The department's keen interest on journalism curricula issues also persuaded me to choose Stellenbosch as my own interests lay in that direction.</p><p><strong>Q:</strong> How did it feel to be selected as the runner-up for the best paper at the Belgium conference?</p><p><strong>A:</strong> When my name was called out, I was stunned and humbled at the same time. It is only after I had actually been handed the prize and the certificate that the whole thing sank in. I must admit that I never expected to be selected for the any of the three prizes that were on offer; after all, over 100 papers were submitted at the congress. Besides, there were so many seasoned journalism scholars, and truly speaking, I did not even dream that I would be honoured in this way. I must admit that I would not have done all this without my wonderful supervisor, Professor Lizette Rabe. We have come from far, and when I look at the first draft of my PhD proposal, I wonder why she did not tell me to forget it. My growth academically and this award are all because of her. Thank you Lizette, You are a true role model.</p><p><strong>Q:</strong> What drove you to focus on a topic such as the Transformation of journalism education and training curricula in post-1994 South Africa: The challenges, specifically for the Belgium conference?</p><p><strong>A: </strong>Firstly, I was guided by the theme of the conference, "Renewing Journalism through Education", to focus on this specific aspect of my thesis. Secondly, despite the general consensus amongst journalism education and training (JE&T) scholars in South Africa that JE&T curricula should be transformed to meet the needs of a transforming South Africa, no significant change has taken place. My PhD study revealed several challenges that JE&T institutions in South Africa faced, challenges which made it very difficult for them to transform their curricula. I felt that these findings would generate scholarly debate as the challenge of transforming JE&T programmes is not peculiar to South Africa.</p><p><strong>Q: </strong>One of the conclusions your thesis, entitled Challenges for journalism education and training in a transforming society: A case study of three selected institutions in post-1994 South Africa, reaches is that "despite the subject of transforming JE&T curricula in South Africa being topical since 1994, no significant change has taken place and that these curricula continue to be underpinned by Western epistemologies and thought." Could you elaborate on this?</p><p><strong>A:</strong> It is no secret that most JE&T scholars in South Africa, as seen in the many conferences and colloquia, as well as the papers written on the subject of JE&T transformation, are not happy with the fact that JE&T curricula in South Africa are rooted on Western epistemologies, which put a lot of emphasis on observable and measurable facts and individualism. Scholarship in the Western context is viewed as scientific and detached from social concerns. Journalists educated in this tradition would be expected to be neutral and objective in their reporting. Whilst not completely dismissing Western epistemologies, South African JE&E scholars are almost all in agreement that these epistemologies are ill-suited to meet the needs of a transforming South Africa.</p><p>Knowing this and acting on it are, however, two different things. To de-Westernise the curricula, there is need to move away from Western-produced towards knowledge which is underpinned by African philosophies and thought. But what we currently have are programmes which rely heavily on Western-produced textbooks, especially textbooks from the USA. To compound the problem, South African JE&T educators, who are supposed to de-Westernise the curricula are themselves Western educated. This is a catch 22 situation. Africa in general and South Africa in particular still do not have the capacity to produce the knowledge which would lead to the de-Westernisation of the programme</p><p>We have to understand that transforming the JE&T curricula is never going to be easy, but it has to be done. I believe the first step towards transforming the curricula is to hold a series of workshops to discuss and come up with a possible model curriculum for JE&T schools in South Africa. The model can be adjusted to meet the needs of the individual localities. Curriculum development is a process, hence the need for a series of workshops. It is high time that South African journalism scholars acted on their convictions.</p><p>To de-Westernise the curricula, I would also suggest that South Africa JE&T scholars embark on an aggressive training programme in which potential researchers can be identified among journalism students. An investment in these young researchers can enrich South African journalism scholarship.<br></p><p><strong>Q: </strong>What contribution will your research make to scholarship surrounding this topic in South Africa or the rest of Africa and even the world?</p><p><strong>A: </strong>Firstly, existing literature shows that there are no studies on JE&T curricula in South Africa. None of the studies done since 1994 have made an attempt to show how a transforming South Africa is reflected in JE&T curricula. Most of the studies done in South Africa have focused on journalism practice in the media industry. This study, has, therefore, made a significant contribution to journalism scholarship in South Africa.<br><br>Secondly, the discourse of JE&T has largely been theoretical and commentary. This study, therefore, has contributed to knowledge on JE&T in South Africa by adding empirical findings to test transformation and blended this with theory. Its findings, though not generalisable to all JE&T institutions in South Africa, indicate the challenges that these tertiary institutions face in their endeavours to transform their curricula.</p><p>Thirdly, the study exposed the shortcomings of JE&T programmes at three universities examined with respect to their specific programmes and their contributions in a transforming country.</p><p>It has also has raised questions which have opened up new avenues for further study.</p><p><strong>Q: </strong>Finally, what advice would you give to journalists or even academics wishing to pursue a doctoral degree?</p><p>My advice is that more PhD students in the field of JE&T should carry out research on journalism education in South Africa. Transformation of JE&T in South Africa will not take place unless there is a concerted effort from JE&T scholars to research extensively on journalism curricula. I recommend Stellenbosch University because I believe it is one of the best in the field of JE&T in South Africa.</p></div>
Invite: Steven Robins' Letters of Stone launchhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3499Invite: Steven Robins' Letters of Stone launchLynne Rippenaar-Moses<p style="font:13px/1.6 "segoe ui", segoe, tahoma, helvetica, arial, sans-serif;margin:0px 0px 10px;color:#444444;text-transform:none;text-indent:0px;letter-spacing:normal;word-spacing:0px;white-space:normal;widows:1;font-size-adjust:none;font-stretch:normal;">Penguin Random House invites you to the launch of <em>Letters of Stone </em>by Steven Robins and the exhibition 'The Chair' by Greer Valley.</p><p style="font:13px/1.6 "segoe ui", segoe, tahoma, helvetica, arial, sans-serif;margin:0px 0px 10px;color:#444444;text-transform:none;text-indent:0px;letter-spacing:normal;word-spacing:0px;white-space:normal;widows:1;font-size-adjust:none;font-stretch:normal;"><em>Letters of Stone </em>tracks Steven Robins' journey of discovery about the lives and fates of his father's family, in southern Africa, Berlin, Riga and Auschwitz. <br><br>Prof Steven Robins from the Sociology and Social Anthropology Department will be in conversation with Prof Kees van der Waal, also from the same department. <br><br>Date: 16 February 2016<br><br>Time: 16:00<br><br>Venue: Sasol Art Museum, 52 Ryneveld Street, Stellenbosch<br><br>RSVP: <a href="mailto:lbrown@penguinrandomhouse.co.za" style="color:#663399;line-height:20.8px;text-decoration:none;">lbrown@penguinrandomhouse.co.za</a><span style="line-height:20.8px;"> | 011 327 3550</span><br><span style="line-height:20.8px;"><span style="line-height:20.8px;"><br>Greer Valley, a curator from the Visual Arts Department at Stellenbosch University, will talk about her new exhibition 'The Chair', which touches on them</span><span style="line-height:20.8px;">es that intersect with </span><em style="line-height:20.8px;">Letters of Stone </em><span style="line-height:20.8px;">in unexpected ways. </span>​<br></span><em style="line-height:20.8px;"><br>Please note: This talk will only be presented in English.</em></p>
Get your Road Map to the BA World herehttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3587Get your Road Map to the BA World hereLynne Rippenaar-Moses<p>Are you interested in one of the Faculty of Arts and Social Science's degree programmes but not sure where to start with the application process? If this is the case, you can <a href="/english/faculty/arts/Documents/Road%20Map%20to%20the%20BA%20World.pdf?Web=1">download</a> our user-friendly <em>Road Map to the BA World </em>here and find out more about how you can navigate the application process step-by-step. </p><p>With 18 departments offering a variety of subjects, there is a lot to choose from. So come visit our Open Day stalls on the 2nd floor of the Arts building on the corner of Merriman and Ryneveld streets from 08:30 to 16:00 today (Saturday, 27 February) to get more information. </p><p><a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3558">Click here</a> for general information on Open Day. </p>
​ Drama department alumni victorious at the kykNET Fiëstas http://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3605​ Drama department alumni victorious at the kykNET Fiëstas Verskaf / Supplied<p>​<span></span><span></span>Alumni of the US drama department made a clean sweep at this year's KykNet Fiëstas.</p><p>All four of the main acting categories went to <em>draMATIES</em>. Stian Bam, who was a part-time lecturer at the drama department, and acclaimed actresss Tinarie van Wyk-Loots respectively won the best actor and best actor awards for their work in the KKNK production, <em>In Glas</em>.  </p><p>The two awards for the best-supporting actress and actor went to Greta Pietersen for <em>Son. Maan. Sterre.</em> (Woordfees)  and Dean Smith for <em>Die Dag is Bros</em> (Innibos).  Dean will receive his Hons in acting in the coming graduation ceremony.  Marlo Minnaar won the award for the best acting in a solo performance for his role in <em>Santa Gamka</em> (KKNK).</p>
Former classmates lead international theological organisationshttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3721Former classmates lead international theological organisationsAlec Basson<p>During the seventy's they were classmates in the Faculty of Theology at Stellenbosch University (SU) and today they are leading international theological organisations.</p><p>Proffs Johann Cook of the Department of Ancient Studies and <span style="line-height:20.8px;">Johan Cilliers of the Discipline Group Practical Theology and Missiology</span> at SU graduated together in 1979 and today they are the presidents of the International Organization for the Study of the Old Testament (IOSOT) - the biggest Old Testament organisation in the world - and Societas Homelitica respectively. ​​<strong><span style="font-size:11pt;line-height:115%;font-family:calibri, sans-serif;"><a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=874">Cook was elected in 2013</a></span></strong> and <span style="line-height:20.8px;">Cilliers </span>in 2014. Their terms end this year.</p><p>At the recent Societas Homelitica conference in Stellenbosch, which was held in Africa for the first time, Cilliers delivered the presidential address. Cook will do the same at the IOSOT conference to be held at SU from 4-9 September. Cook was instrumental in bringing the conference to Africa for the first time. It will only be the second time that the conference will take place outside of Europe.</p><p>Both Cook and Cilliers say they enjoy working with colleagues from all over the world. They add that it is an honour to lead their respective organisations.</p><p>Cilliers says he is fortunate to have a capable team helping him deal with the administrative challenges of his position.</p><p>Prof Louis Jonker, from the discipline group Old and New Testament in the Faculty of Theology, will serve as conference secretary of IOSOT 2016. </p><ul><li><strong style="line-height:1.6;">Photo</strong><span style="line-height:1.6;">: Proff Johann Cook (left) and Johan Cilliers</span><br></li></ul>
Language implementation in the 2nd termhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3730Language implementation in the 2nd termProf Johan Hattingh<p>​​Dear Student in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences</p><p>I am thoroughly aware of the uncertainty created by the language interdict of Afriforum, which requires  us to strictly apply  the language specifications of the 2016 Yearbook from 29 March. What happens now to the principle that no student should be excluded on the basis of language? To address this uncertainty I would like to convey the following to you about the language practice that you can expect from 29 March in your classes. </p><p>There are two main points of departure that the Faculty will follow from 29 March, the first of which is demanded by the interdict: </p><ul><li>As of 29 March 2016 we have to strictly adhere  to the language specifications of the 2016 Yearbook (Afriforum court interdict, and the SU Council requirement not to reduce the Afrikaans offering).</li><li><span style="line-height:1.6;">SU wants  to be 100% accessible to st</span><span style="line-height:1.6;">udents that are not academically literate in Afrikaans and therefore all module content covered  in lectures will  also be available in English (SU Council resolution supporting  an increase of the English offering to 100%).</span></li></ul><p><strong>In practice this will entail the following:</strong></p><ul><li><span style="line-height:1.6;">​</span><span style="line-height:1.6;">​</span><span style="line-height:1.6;">Most Departments  will return to the conventional T-modules, with the proviso that this will be implemented with the utmost circumspection to ensure that no student is excluded on the basis of language of tuition. You will be informed at the beginning of the term and at the beginning of lectures about this intention and the two points of departure mentioned above, and also about what exactly will be done in each module in order to implement these points of departure.</span></li><li><span style="line-height:1.6;"></span><span style="line-height:1.6;">In order to ensure that all lectures are at least available in English, and that Afrikaans is available as specified in the 2016 Yearbook (50% or more), some Departments will provide extra lectures in Afrikaans and/or English.</span></li><li><span style="line-height:1.6;"></span><span style="line-height:1.6;">In cases where lecturers are only proficient in English, Departments will provide interpretation in Afrikaans, and/or extra lectures in Afrikaans.</span></li></ul><p></p><p>​​Until such time as the Language Policy and Plan of the University  is  officially changed, we will have to live with these arrangements.  I will depend on your understanding and cooperation to help implement the abovementioned arrangements  with dignity and respect. </p><p>I hope this letter will help allay any uncertainty, but if you have any further questions, please send an e-mail to Tanja Malan (tanja@sun.ac.za), who will convey it to me.<br><br>Kind regards</p><p>Johan Hattingh<br> Dean, 24 March 2016</p>
Nelson Mandela colloquium on 30 Marchhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3732Nelson Mandela colloquium on 30 MarchLynne Rippenaar-Moses<p>The Nelson Mandela Museum, in cooperation with the Stellenbosch University Museum, cordially invites you to the Nelson Mandela Colloquium.</p><p><strong>Keynote speakers:</strong></p><p>Prof Xolela Mangcu, professor of sociology, University of Cape Town</p><p>Prof Amanda Gouws, distinguished professor of political science, Stellenbosch University (SU)</p><p>Mr Bradly Frolick, SU Student Representative Council, Transformation portfolio</p><p>DATE:  30 March 2016<br><br>TIME: 18:00</p><p>VENUE: Stellenbosch University Museum (Sasol Art Museum), Ryneveld Street, Stellenbosch</p><p>RSVP: Mrs Nwabisa Moshenyane at nmoshenyane@sun.ac.za or  on 021 808 3691.</p><p><em>Refreshments and wine will be served after the discussions. </em></p>
Everyone must take a stand against rape culturehttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3806Everyone must take a stand against rape cultureLouise du Toit<p>​It is crucial that all South Africans support campaigns against the rape culture in our country, writes Prof Louise du Toit of the Department of Philosophy in an opinion piece published in Cape Times on Tuesday (12 April 2016).</p><ul><li><p>Read the complete article below or click <a href="/english/Documents/newsclips/LduToit_Cape%20Times_April%202016.pdf" style="text-decoration:underline;"><strong>here</strong></a> to read the piece as published.<br></p></li></ul><p><strong>Putting the spotlight on 'rape culture'</strong></p><p><strong>Louise du Toit</strong></p><p>The Student Representative Council (SRC) of Stellenbosch University (SU) recently launched a campaign to fight against 'rape culture' on campus. The term 'rape culture' triggered an avalanche of emotional responses, but seemingly without leading to any attempts to clarify what the term may mean. </p><p>Unfortunately, lack of conceptual clarity, especially with regards to an emotive term such as 'rape culture', often leads to miscommunication, misunderstanding, heated debates and high rhetoric, which hinder rather than promote much needed concerted action.</p><p>When thinking about or discussing the term 'rape culture' or 'rape-prone' culture, it is important to keep in mind that it does not mean that actual rape has become the literal norm, or even that a majority of cultural members become involved in it.  Rather, it means that there is a pervasive culture in a country or institution which renders rape a meaningful or easy option for would-be offenders. </p><p>With April being Sexual Assault Awareness Month, it is important to consider the term 'rape culture' and its origins to avoid clouding the issue through conceptual obscurity.</p><p>It was coined in the 1970s by second-wave American feminists such as Noreen Connell and Susan Brownmiller, when feminists for the very first time placed sexual violence on political and academic agendas. This is indicative of the ancient history of women's sexual oppression: that the theme appeared in public consciousness only so late in modern western history.  </p><p>Connell, Brownmiller and other feminists basically meant two things by 'rape culture', namely that rape and other forms of sexual violence are much more pervasive than most people think and will like to admit, and that rape and other forms of sexual violence are to some extent normalised and trivialised by mainstream cultural practices and perspectives. They thus drew attention to how misogynist cultures, jokes, media, role models, and so on, have the effect of normalising or naturalising sexual violence against women. </p><p>Not only South Africa, but also the USA, Australia, Canada, India, and Pakistan have all been accused of sustaining 'rape cultures' (or, in the words of American anthropologist Peggy Reeves Sanday, 'rape-prone' cultures). Add to this the sexual violence perpetrated against women and girls during armed conflicts – even by peace-keeping forces – and it becomes clear that 'rape cultures' are indeed much more prevalent than we think. </p><p>Since 'rape culture' seems to be pervasive in certain countries, one must ask what the factors are that may contribute to this phenomenon. Among these, we can highlight the following: (i) practices of blaming and shaming the victims rather than the offenders; (ii) rape jokes; (iii) trivialising or denying the harms of rape; (iv) high-profile figures who get away with misogynist behaviour; (v) the denial that men and boys are also victims of sexual violence; (vi) official investigative, medical or other procedures that subject rape victims to secondary victimisation and traumatisation; (vii) institutions that place their reputation, brand and public image above the sexual integrity of their members; (viii) naturalising rape as a tendency of male sexuality as such; (ix) trivialising sexual violence as 'rough sex'; (x) selective, e.g. racist or classist applications of the sanction of sexual violence; (xi) apathy displayed by the relevant authorities; (xii) reinforcing of sexual stereotypes such as female sexual passivity and male sexual agency or even force; (xiii) general tolerance of sexist behaviour and institutionalised disrespect for women;  and (ix) fraternity practices that treat sex with women as a competition amongst men.</p><p>​Regarding our own context, the stakes in this type of debate are undoubtedly high, because nothing less is at stake than the full citizenship of women and girls (as the primary victims of sexual violence) in post-apartheid South Africa. We have witnessed countless times how sexual violence and the threat of such violence are being used as effective means of stripping women of their political status and reducing them to voiceless, obedient, fearful, second-class citizens. The extent of sexual violence in South Africa is very well documented – we have one of the highest incidences in the world – and it poses a substantial threat to our democratic project as a whole. With this in mind, campaigns like the one initiated by Stellenbosch University's SRC are important political struggles that we should all support. Not just universities, but also society as a whole stands to benefit from such initiatives.</p><p>*Prof Louise du Toit is Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Stellenbosch University. She is the author of the book, A Philosophical Investigation of Rape: the making and unmaking of the feminine self.</p><p> </p><p><br></p>