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Sunday, 26 April 2015

Understanding and responding to xenophobic violence

Xenophobia Discussion

At lunchtime on Thursday 23 April 2015, while Johannesburg residents marched against xenophobic violence, UCT gathered for a discussion on how to better understand, respond to and prevent this kind of violence in South Africa.

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Postgrads showcase winning research

Postgrads showcase

The very nature of the university as we know it is changing, Dr Marilet Sienaert, executive director of the Research Office, said at the recent UCT Postgraduate Research Expo.

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Decolonising UCT

Decolonising UCT

A panel of distinguished academics as well as students from the Rhodes Must Fall movement shared their ideas on how they see the process of decolonising UCT moving forward, during a lively, often heated debate.

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A people's history of struggle

Protest in 1976

This Freedom Day, we mark the extraordinary turnabout in South Africa's history with reflections from a few UCT staff and former students on how the struggle against apartheid took shape on campus – their memories of student sit-ins, government spies, and the everyday indignities of apartheid.

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UCT researchers shine in prestigious health awards

HIV/Aids

South African universities, including UCT, have received significant awards – a total of US$8-million in the first year – to support research targeting HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and HIV-related disorders and cancers.

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Campus trees on the mend after ring-barking

Fynbos

The three camphor trees along Stanley Road on middle campus that were stripped of their bark in December last year are responding well to treatment after arborist and conservation forester Riaan van Zyl applied "tree paste" to the stems.

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New system aids drought predictions in biodiverse regions

Fynbos

Climate-change-induced drought is threatening the world's biodiversity hotspots; but a new, standardisable system to describe drought strategies in plants will help conservationists understand the impact of future drought, says a new paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Confucius Institute: A bridge between Africa and China

Assoc Prof Shengyong Qin

Not only is China Africa's largest trading partner, but nearly 1.2 billion people (around 16% of the world's population) speak some form of Chinese as their first language. Thanks to the Confucius Institute, UCT students can emerge from their studies fluent in Chinese language and culture, and prepared to engage with the role this growing economic powerhouse plays on the continent.

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Huge numbers at Mathematics Competition

Mathematics Competition

No fewer than 7 500 students from across the Western Cape converged on upper campus on 16 April to take part in UCT's Mathematics Competition. They came from as nearby as Rondebosch and as far afield as Bredasdorp and George, all with the single purpose of solving some of the toughest mathematics they will encounter in their high school careers.

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UCT condemns xenophobic attacks on African immigrants

UCT

The University of Cape Town expresses its abhorrence and deep concern over the rise of xenophobic attacks on foreign nationals in Kwazulu-Natal, Gauteng and other places around our country.

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Xenophobia at odds with SA 'rhetoric of inclusivity and human rights'

Prof Francis B Nyamnjoh

Everyone in South Africa – citizens and foreigners alike – should be worried by the recent spate of attacks on black foreigners that started in KwaZulu-Natal and have subsequently spread to other parts of the country, says social anthropologist Professor Francis B Nyamnjoh.

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Meet the winners of the 2014 Social Responsiveness Award

Mfuleni ECD centre

Early childhood development and urban activism may not at first glance have much in common. Nonetheless, it was the long-term commitment displayed by Stuart Hendry, director of the Faculty of Commerce's Development Unit for New Enterprise (DUNE), and Associate Professor Sophie Oldfield to projects within these fields that won them both the 2014 Vice-Chancellor's Award for Social Responsiveness.

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SRC 2015 says #NoToXenophobia

Xenophobia

UCT's Students' Representative Council (SRC) strongly condemns the xenophobic attacks against fellow Africans that have been taking place in KwaZulu-Natal and its surrounding areas.

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Announcing public consultation phase re: Rhodes statue

public consultation phase

UCT is in the process of applying for the permanent removal of the Rhodes statue (following its temporary removal on 9 April 2015). This process includes an assessment of the statue's history, context and heritage significance, consideration of alternative options, and a public consultation process.

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Give us another space, says RMF

RMF press conference

At a press conference on Jameson Plaza on 13 April, the Rhodes Must Fall (RMF) movement made three demands: that the university provides a space to replace 'Azania House', that it does not prosecute or discipline students for inappropriate behaviour in the run up to the removal of the Rhodes statue on 9 April, and that it continue removing "imperialist, patriarchal and colonial" symbols and statues.

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TransformUCT: 'The future is watching'

The Future is Watching

TransformUCT – a group of black academics committed to transformation at the university – appeals for earnest engagement around transformation.

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Transformation: Vibrant student spaces needed

Vibrant student spaces needed

In the aftermath of the Rhodes statue's removal comes a signed statement expressing concern regarding UCT management's recent response to the Rhodes Must Fall student campaign and calling for more spaces in which students can talk and reflect on transformation transparently.

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Explorations in South African flute music

Explorations in South African flute music

"Music chooses you, and not the other way around," says flautist and lecturer Dr Liesl Stoltz, about how and why she recorded the first CD of flute music by South African composers.

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Why we should care about dust – and the crucial role it plays in our climate

Huab Valley

Dust doesn't get a lot of attention until it makes us sneeze or collects in dark corners, or blows up in dramatic storms. However, that is beginning to change.

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Forget the myths about immigrants

Immigrants

A new wave of attacks on foreign migrants working in the informal economy makes it clear that the problems that bubbled over recently are far from resolved.

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African photographers: How we frame ourselves

African photographs

Veteran photographer Paul Weinberg presents images from 'The Other Camera', an exhibition featuring archival photographs of Africans taken by Africans.

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Urgent update on the Rhodes statue and Bremner occupation

VC Desk

Vice–Chancellor Dr Max Price updates the campus community on urgent steps to be taken following the removal of the Rhodes statue.

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Dynamic dance duo present Baxter double bill

Dynamic dance duo present Baxter double bill

Two of South Africa's leading dancers and choreographers, Grant van Ster and Shaun Oelf, will present a short season of two works at the Baxter's Flipside stage from 9 to 18 April 2015.

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Rhodes goes quietly amid jubilation

Rhodes goes quietly amid jubilation

The removal of the Rhodes statue from its dominant perch overlooking the Cape Flats was met with songs and celebration. It seemed afterwards that campus exhaled.

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UCT's Rhodes statue to be removed at 17h00 today

UCT's Rhodes statue to be removed at 17h00 today

UCT's Rhodes statue to be removed at 17h00 today.

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An end to assimilation, the right to self-determination

Ramabina Mahapa's

SRC statement delivered at the UCT Association of Black Alumni discussion on transformation on 8 March 2015.

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South Africa by numbers: what is happening to poverty, employment and disease?

Poverty

The National Income Dynamics Study has found that poverty is falling, but that nearly two-thirds of citizens classified as poor in the 2008 survey were still poor in 2012; that nearly half of employed youths don't have stable employment; and that chronic lifestyle disease is the second most pervasive illness after HIV/AIDS.

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VC Price reflects on the Rhodes Statue debate

UCT Council votes in favour of removing Rhodes statue

Vice–Chancellor Dr Max Price marks the moment when UCT decided to remove the statue of Cecil John Rhodes from campus – noting it as a turning point for transformation.

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SRC welcomes Council's decision to remove the Rhodes statue

SRC welcomes Council's decision to remove the Rhodes statue

SRC President Ramabina Mahapa speaks at the special Council sitting on 8 April 2015 to decide on the fate of the statue of Cecil John Rhodes.

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UCT Council votes in favour of removing Rhodes statue

UCT Council votes in favour of removing Rhodes statue

Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane, chairperson of UCT's Council, issued the following statement regarding the status of the Rhodes statue, following a special sitting of Council on 8 April 2015.

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UCT and Heritage Western Cape's joint statement on the temporary removal of the Rhodes statue from upper campus

UCT and Heritage Western Cape's joint statement on the temporary removal of the Rhodes statue from upper campus

UCT and Heritage Western Cape's joint statement on the temporary removal of the Rhodes statue from upper campus.

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Two researchers' journey from AIDS despair to an age of hope

Desmond Tutu HIV Centre

Professors Robin Wood and Linda–Gail Bekker have won the 2014 Alan Pifer Award for excellence in research, treatment, training and prevention of HIV–related diseases and infections in Southern Africa. Their journey has taken them from the dark days of AIDS denial to an important moment in the history of the epidemic.

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Faster, more decisive transformation needed – Rod Solomons

Faster, more decisive transformation needed – Rod Solomons

UCT must move faster and more decisively to thoroughly transform the institution Advocate Rod Solomons (pictured left), national vice–president of the UCT Association of Black Alumni (UCTABA), said at a panel discussion the association hosted in the Kramer Building last night.

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Convocation debates Rhodes and transformation

Convocation debates Rhodes and transformation

UCT's Convocation, the body of the university's graduates, gathered for a special general meeting on 7 April 2015. The purpose was to allow its members to express their opinions on the future of the Cecil John Rhodes statue on UCT's upper campus, as well as on broader transformation issues.

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UCT Convocation expresses views on Rhodes statue's future and broader transformation issues

UCT Convocation expresses views on Rhodes statue's future and broader transformation issues

UCT's Convocation, the body of the university's graduates, gathered for a special general meeting on 7 April 2015. The purpose was to allow its members to express their opinions on the future of the Cecil John Rhodes statue on UCT's upper campus, as well as on broader transformation issues.

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PRAESA wins top international reading promotion award

PRAESA wins top international award

The Project for the Study of Alternative Education in South Africa (PRAESA) has been honoured with one of the world's most prestigious children's literacy accolades – the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (ALMA).

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UCT condemns attack on Garissa University College, Kenya

Kenyan Flag

The University of Cape Town condemns the attack by armed gunmen at Garissa University College in Kenya, saying that universities are meant to be special places of learning, sharing and tolerance, not violence.

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Leslie Bank debates the future of UCT's Rhodes statue

Leslie Bank debates the future of UCT's Rhodes statue and reviews broader transformation issues in Higher Education

Director and professor of the Fort Hare Institute of Social and Economic Research, Leslie Bank, debates the future of UCT's Rhodes statue and reviews broader transformation issues in Higher Education.

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How to honour Archie Mafeje's legacy

How to honour Archie Mafeje's legacy

Forty–seven years ago, UCT social anthropology alumnus Dr Archie Mafeje successfully applied for a senior lectureship at his alma mater, only for Council to withdraw his appointment a month later, drawing stinging criticism from staff and students. On what would've been Mafeje's 79th birthday, the Archie Mafeje Annual Memorial Lecture was held at UCT – and provided an opportunity to reflect on the lessons of his life, work and legacy.

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UCT Academics Union statement on #rhodesmustfall

UCT Academics Union statement on #rhodesmustfall

The UCT Academic Union supports the call to remove the Rhodes statue and commit to finding solutions to transformation-related issues.

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'History changes over time – nobody owns it'

Rhodes protest

We need to come to terms with our history, to understand the contribution of those who made their mark on society – often in a complex and contradictory way, writes Ghaleb Cachalia in a letter to UCT's Vice-Chancellor Dr Max Price.

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UCT Association of Black Alumni (UCTABA) view on Rhodes statue

UCT Association of Black Alumni (UCTABA) view on Rhodes statue

The Western Cape chapter of the UCT Association of Black Alumni share the organisation's view on the Rhodes statue and invite alumni and other key stakeholders to a public event on 7 April 2015 to discuss ways of ensuring deeper transformation at the university.

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