Suren Pillay

SA adopting colonial categories of people drives racial divide

A past of ‘define and rule’ led to current tensions between coloured, black and Indian people

Is institutional autonomy a myth?

The time has come to debate the assumption of academic freedom that universities hold dear .

Decolonising the humanities

Scholars should not plead "academic freedom" to avoid critiquing their discipline’s apartheid legacies.

Silence vs dissent

If we want to reconstitute the humanities and social sciences, we first have to critique them

Fighting fire with fire burns us all

Whereas leaders represent the people, they must also sometimes lead by being able to see beyond what many of us might feel or want.

New traditions in liberation politics

Compelling as it may be, getting too absorbed in the intrigue of palace politics and personalities will lead us away from clarity in this crisis.

Yesterday and today, but what of tomorrow?

The 2007 Community ­Survey conducted by Statistics South Africa gives an impressive account of our developmental progress, concluding that ''today is better than yesterday''. The survey also makes it clear that our society is undergoing massive changes. From the most intimate relations to the most abstract levels of social interaction, communities are in flux.

Turkey: Things are not what they seem

The crisis in Turkey has been portrayed, simplistically, as a struggle between secular democracy and Islam. But matters are far more complex. Last Sunday the Justice and Development Party, the allegedly Islamist grouping led by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, captured many more votes than its opponents in a national poll, writes Suren Pillay.

Corruption and the ‘two publics’

Afro-pessimists must reflect gleefully on the steady stream of corruption scandals fixating the post-apartheid South African media. After all, this is Africa, they say knowingly, and we are merely a postcolonial Johnny-come-lately to the continental way of doing things.

Is the two state option still viable?

''There is a saying that goes ''pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will''. This might be a useful refrain when considering the Israeli withdrawal from the Gaza Strip. A Palestinian state, it seems, is increasingly in the interest of the Zionist project,'' writes Suren Pillay, a lecturer in the department of political studies at the University of the Western Cape.

Why we MUST talk about race

In certain circles it has become old-fashioned to talk about race and class as categories through which to make sense of the behaviour of people around the world in general, and in South Africa in particular.

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