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The Cheeky Natives

The Cheeky Natives

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The Cheeky Natives
The Cheeky Natives

The Cheeky Natives

The Cheeky Natives

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Followers
5
Plays
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Podcast by The Cheeky Natives

Latest Episodes

Professor Pumla Dineo Gqola: Feminist Rogue

'While there are many feminist strands, which is to say different kinds of feminism, there are also many core principles. The commitment to actively oppose and end patriarchy is one. The recognition that patriarchy works like other systems of oppression, like racism and capitalism, to value some people and brutalise others is another area of agreement. Like other systems of oppression, it also requires the support of many members of the groups it oppresses.'― Pumla Dineo Gqola, Reflecting Rogue: Inside the Mind of a Feminist Professor Pumla Dineo Gqola is currently the Dean of Research at the University of Fort Hare. Prof Gqola’s illustrious career spans full-time academic and research positions at several South African universities and other institutions, she started off as a junior lecturer and rose to the rank of senior lecturer at the University of Free State before she joined Human Science Research Council as a Chief Research Specialist. She then joined Meraka institute at the council for Scientific and industrial research. As a gender activist, award-winning author and full professor, Pumla Dineo Gqola has written extensively for both local and international academic journals. She is the author of four books including the seminal work “Rape: A South African Nightmare”. In an impromptu podcast recording, Prof Gqola sat down with the Cheeky Natives to discuss her work as a gender activist, scholar and black feminist. This episode was particularly moving as it was recorded in Cape Town in the week of Uyinene Mrwetyana’s harrowing assault and murder among that of numerous South African womxn and children. In a frank and powerful conversation, the Cheeky Natives and Prof Gqola sat down to discuss what it means to be a country in crisis, the racialised nature of violence and the nightmare in which South African womxn are trapped in. In a wide-ranging discussion regarding her scholarship and impressive publication history, we explored what it means to be a renegade and pioneer and yet belong so deeply to one’s self. The politics of self-ownership for Black womxn who are feminist activists is an entire thesis. Follow her on Twitter @feminist_rogue

61 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Professor Pumla Dineo Gqola: Feminist Rogue

Dr Ainehi Edoro-Glines: Brittle Paper

African literature is changing’ - Brittle Paper Brittle Paper is your go-to site for African writing and literary culture. Brittle Paper brings you all the latest news and juicy updates on publications, authors, events, prizes, and lifestyle. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram (@brittlepaper) and sign up for our "I love African Literature" newsletter. Brittle Paper states that ‘the current generation of African readers are driven more by their tastes and passions than by allegiance to some abstract political idea. They are young, open, and unconventional in their interests. They are social media savvy and dependent on mobile technology for media consumption. This has led to the popularity of shorter writings—flash fiction, online story series, and digital imprints of mass-market novellas. The obsession with realist fiction that defined older generations has given way to an avid interest in speculative writing—fantasy, science fiction— but also in experimental narratives, pulp-fiction, and other offbeat genres.’ And as a result, Brittle Paper became a literary project designed to adapt African literary culture that is dynamic and adaptable. Dr Ainehi Edoro-Glines is the founder and Editor of Brittle Paper, a leading online platform dedicated to African writing and literary culture. She is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she teaches and researches on African literature, political theory, and literature in social media. She was named by OkayAfrica as one of its top women in African literature 2018. While in the stunning Madison, Dr Alma-Nalisha Cele connected with Dr Edoro-Glines and discussed her life goals of bringing African literature to the front and what it means to build our own platforms for critical engagement with African literature. Of course, the discussion would’ve been incomplete without delving into “that” essay. Her current book project is titled “Forest Imaginaries: How African Novels Think.” She also writes essays and commentaries about contemporary African literary culture in mainstream publications such as The Guardian and Africa is a Country. Dr Edoro-Glines is profoundly influenced by the literary icon, Chinua Achebe. Her life goal has been to bring African literature to the forefront, and more specifically to bring a fresh perspective to the study of the late Nigerian novelist's work. Her article on Things Fall Apart is forthcoming in The Cambridge Journal of Postcolonial Literary Enquiry. Follow Brittle Paper on Twitter and Instagram (@brittlepaper) and you can also visit their website www. brittlepaper.com

64 MINNOV 15
Comments
Dr Ainehi Edoro-Glines: Brittle Paper

Nicole Dennis -Benn: Patsy

“Just two years shy of thirty, Patsy has nothing to show for it besides the flimsy brown envelope that she uses to shade herself from the white-hot glare of the sun. the envelope contains all her papers — from birth certificate to vaccination records. But most importantly, it carries her dream, a dream every Jamaican of a certain social ranking shares: boarding an airplane to America. For the destination, and for the ability to fly.” – Nicole Dennis-Benn Patsy is a book that chronicles the life of the protagonist Patsy, who leaves Jamaica to chase the America dream. Her leaving for ‘green pastures’ means leaving her daughter behind. This shock is a wonderful plot device as it forces readers to examine their socialised understanding of motherhood and what ideal mothering looks like. Throughout the story, we were taken on a haunting journey that both answers and asks questions about those who make the pilgrimage for a better life and those who stay. This is an immigrant story but not for the western gaze. In a true reflection of her prodigious talent, Nicole confronts difficult themes with grace and humanity asking the readers to push themselves beyond their ideas of what it takes to make a difficult decision. In a poignant, thoughtful and exciting podcast, The Cheeky Natives sat with the brilliant Nicole Dennis-Benn to explore the themes of isolation, abandonment, immigration, the ‘American dream’, racism, homophobia and the challenges of being Black, alive and queer in any space. In some parts, this conversation was an exploration of the weight it takes to be a difficult woman making selfish decisions and in many other parts, it was excavation on the intersection of race, sexuality, immigration and the weight of becoming. Nicole Dennis-Benn is a brilliant writer giving voice and documenting the untold stories of the ‘undocumented’. In this conversation, The Cheeky Natives excavated her politics, writing and what it means to hold the weight of an entire community’s expectation. Her previous debut was ‘Here comes the sun’ which was heralded as exploitation of racism, sexuality and other difficult themes. She continues to do the important work in her sophomore novel. Fresh off her second visit to Open Book Festival in Cape Town, The Cheeky Natives were thrilled to have this conversation before the launch of her latest work in Johannesburg. A review in the New York Times affirms that “You’ll come to know Nicole Dennis-Benn’s characters as intimately as you would a lover. They are refined in their humanity and depth.”

59 MINOCT 13
Comments
Nicole Dennis -Benn: Patsy

Vanessa Govender: Beaten but not Broken

“This is my story. This happened to me. Who he is, is irrelevant. He could be the boy next door, a street sweeper or your son – he could be anyone. I refuse to make this story about him or who he is. He is no different from any abusive man. His name is irrelevant. What he did though, is relevant. What he did to me – over and over again – is very relevant.” – Vanessa Govender Beaten but not Broken by Vanessa Govender is a harrowing story. In recent weeks, we have seen the resurfacing of conversation about Gender-Based Violence following the deaths of a number of womxn, killed by men. Gender-Based Violence in South Africa is alarmingly high. It is reported that a womxn dies every 3 hours. In this memoir, Vanessa recounts her own experience. Vanessa writes: “This is South Africa. My story is one of hundreds of thousands of women, many of whom are silent and don’t have the courage to speak out because they are simply too afraid. I know their fear. I’ve known it, lived with it all these years, following me, hanging over my shoulders, filling my head.” Vanessa Govender grew up in a conservative Indian community. This community ostracised Vanessa because she was dark-skinned. The colour of Vanessa’s skin meant that she was the victim of childhood bullying and often low self-esteem issues that followed her into her adult life. Vanessa gives us a glimpse of the brutally that took place while she was in a relationship with a colleague in her years as a journalist. She recounts the beating, the sexual assaults and the rape that took place. In this story, Vanessa brings to light that class and fame does not necessarily protect you from the brutality of intimate partner violence. The story retells the dark years of the violence and how often many people were complacent in assisting Vanessa. The memoir allows tells a story of healing, of love and hope. We challenge Vanessa on the idea of nonracialism and ask her how it works in the world, where race has polarised almost every fabric of society. This conversation was challenging and heart-breaking in many parts but also very necessary to bring to light the horror of Gender-Based Violence.

52 MINSEP 19
Comments
Vanessa Govender: Beaten but not Broken

Desiree-Anne Martin: We don't Talk About it Ever

‘But I am done with deceit. Lies no longer hold any allure for me. Now I seek true words that will, somehow, begin to heal that which has broken.’ – Desiree – Anne Martin (@believe_deeply). ‘We Don't Talk About It. Ever' is Desiree-Anne Martin’s powerful, harrowing, and poignant portrayal of her journey from an addict to an author. Heart-breaking in some parts but also so inspiring, she takes us through this journey in an intimate and honest revelation of the road to destruction and the journey to redemption. In a powerful but quiet way, Desiree-Anne shows just how the wounds of childhood translate into adult traumas. But in a wonderful homage to the power of healing, Desiree-Anne’s journey is also one of hope. She sat with The Cheeky Natives to discuss her book ‘We don’t talk about it. Ever’ And what it means to journey through the most hopeless of situations from substance abuse to toxic relationships. Desiree-Anne’s book is a triumphant journey.

62 MINAUG 31
Comments
Desiree-Anne Martin: We don't Talk About it Ever

Sisonke Msimang: The Resurrection of Winnie Mandela

‘With razor-sharp insight, Msimang writes in a reflective tone that contains both heartbreak and humour, as she navigates some often-overlooked complexities surrounding race, womanhood and class.’ – Cher Tan, Books and Publishing Just some of the words that come to mind when thinking of Sisonke Msimang’s second book ‘The Resurrection of Winnie Mandela’ Written in response to her passing of Winnie Mandela, Sisonke’s book is haunting and inspiring. In answering the question of redemption as it comes to iconic, powerful Black womxn, Sisonke is also asking the reader questions on our morality. The book written in the second person contextualises Winnie Mandela’s life from before she was born to when she died. Sisonke skillfully and poetically converses with Winnie by reclaiming her and celebrating her. She writes about how Winnie encounter powerful womxn upon arriving in Joburg dispelling the myth that Winnie became political because of Nelson. She writes about the moment Winnie saw Nelson, their love - showing us that theirs was a deep, profound love. Further, in the book, she writes about the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and how Winnie was treated at this Commission, this allows us to question the true nature of the TRC and whether it was about truth. In the same breath, she holds Winnie to account by writing about the deaths of the 18 boys that Winnie may have been involved in. In this, she demands of us to hold Winnie to account for these deaths and to take some ownership in the passing of these boys. She writes about the mothers of these children and how they came head to head with Winnie demanding the truth. In this book, Sisonke encourages us to use Winnie’s life to think about nation-building and Blackwomxnhood. It’s a powerful conversation about reclaiming our heroes.

64 MINAUG 12
Comments
Sisonke Msimang: The Resurrection of Winnie Mandela

Landa Mabenge: Becoming Him: a Trans memoir of Triumph

‘But humility is a work of progress and there are times when I need to work on practising tolerance. Whenever individuals question my ‘genitals’ I am reminded of how blinkered and obsessed with labels we humans are. Whatever lies between my legs, whether I sit or stand when I pee, my genitals are what they are and they serve their purpose. Whatever the shape, size or name of them, and whether I have chosen to surgically align my body to my identity or not, I remain the man I have always been.’ - Landa Mabenge In his memoir, ‘Becoming Him’, Landa Mabenge details his journey as the first transgender man to have his surgical transition paid for by his medical aid. From childhood, Landa knew that how he looked on the outside was not aligned with how he felt on the inside. These feelings were particularly exacerbated in puberty. He recalls the confusion and trauma that came with all these changes and the inability to vocalise how he felt. His childhood was not an easy one either. A childhood characterised by abandonment, separation, and constant, unending abuse meant that these changes were only exacerbated. In a deeply personal account, Landa also takes us through his time at UCT, highlighting the toll on his mental health that the journey of self-discovery took. There is a powerful commentary on themes of abuse, self-discovery and uncomfortable change, both inside and outside. This dynamic of change is highlighted in Landa’s relationship with his loved ones, in those who choose to support and those who do not. The question of what it means to have to reckon with toxicity from those closest to us is a painful topic that Landa explores with poise. Landa’s story represents so many of the facets of what is good about the human experience. Tenacity, resilience and the courage it takes to become. Groundbreaking. Poignant and inspirational.

60 MINJUL 22
Comments
Landa Mabenge: Becoming Him: a Trans memoir of Triumph

Rekgotsofetse Chikane: Breaking a Rainbow, Building a Nation

“Whiteness seeks to remove us from its embrace because we threaten it. We place its position at the centre at risk when we dare to usurp it rather than simply remain constant in relation to it. Exerting my identity undermines the identity of whiteness. Yet exerting my identity calls into question my commitment to follow this feeling of emancipation from whiteness to its natural conclusion. It challenges whether or not I am willing to dismantle the system in which I exist to place myself in the centre at the expense of whiteness and the social leverage it has afforded me. This uncertainty of the coconut’s commitment begs the question: as a coconut, are you willing to slide down the snake to join those who have been excluded from the born-free ladder and assist them in the revolution, the chimurenga?’ - Rekgotsofetse Chikane These words end the first chapter of Rekgotsofetse Chikane’s Breaking a Rainbow, Building a Nation: #The Politics behind #MustFallMovements Rekgotsofetse Chik...

52 MINJUN 28
Comments
Rekgotsofetse Chikane: Breaking a Rainbow, Building a Nation

Sihle Bolani: We Are The Ones We Need

“But I’ve had time now to really think about the issue of racism, abuse, and discrimination against black professionals in the workplace, as a system, because that’s exactly what it is. A system. Designed to maintain the status quo, this system ensures that power imbalance remains unchanged.” – Sihle Bolani Sihle Bolani invited us into her life in a deeply personal way. She tells a story about her time in corporate. Her book written in the first person, in a journal/diary-like way, a method she intentionally chooses. She delves into the challenges faced by her and what she believes many Black professionals in South Africa’s corporate environment experience as well. Her book focuses on themes that include structural racism in organisations; the role executives play in sustaining discriminatory practices; pay discrimination; the emotional and psychological trauma suffered by Black professionals as a result of corporate abuse and the suppression of black talent, especially Black womxn. In this podcast, we sat down with Sihle to speak about her book. We spoke about the method of writing the book, white womxn in corporate, bullying, constructive dismissal, racism, sexism. We spoke about the role of Black executives and their complicity in perpetuating inequality. Sihle also offers us her way forward, a call to action. We spoke about some elements of the call to action. She believes that these actions can go a long way to dismantle systems of oppression. A deeply insightful, personal conversation filled with ‘aha’ moments. This episode continues conversations about racism, sexism and the workplace and how we can continue to fight to dismantle them.

61 MINJUN 1
Comments
Sihle Bolani: We Are The Ones We Need

Malebo Sephodi: Miss Behave

‘Well-behaved women seldom make history.’ -@malebosephodi writes deeply on the way this quote by Laurel Thatcher has influenced her life and writing. The Cheeky Natives sat down with the magical Malebo Sephodi, author of Miss Behave. Miss Behave is an award-winning text on a Black feminist journey to consciousness. Graceful and so relatable, Miss Behave is in part a journal and a love letter to black womxn of all ages. Far too often, in the age of wokeness, there’s been almost an absence of acknowledgement of the stages of awakening that even our most woke favourites have gone through. Miss Behave is an excellent example of these different stages. With sensitivity and awareness that only someone who's encountered the full depth of what Ntozake Shange describes as the metaphysical experience that is being a Black womxn, Malebo writes on the far-reaching themes of patriarchy, misogynoir and navigating relationships in the bodies Black womxn inhabit. This book has womxn, young and old snapping their fingers in formation at so many of the micro-aggressions detailed. There’s a gold mine of ‘aha’ moments in Miss Behave. Miss Behave is so much more than just a book. It’s a movement, having generated powerful conversations everywhere in its wake following its release. What was particularly striking about this book is the use of accessible language to explain academic concepts such as patriarchy and body shaming, proving that the academy doesn’t always have to be inaccessible. In a live podcast, Malebo sat with the Cheeky Natives as we waxed lyrical on the themes of patriarchy, corporate racism and the difficulties of navigating this world in bodies such as ours. Fun, challenging and thought-provoking.

91 MINMAY 3
Comments
Malebo Sephodi: Miss Behave

Latest Episodes

Professor Pumla Dineo Gqola: Feminist Rogue

'While there are many feminist strands, which is to say different kinds of feminism, there are also many core principles. The commitment to actively oppose and end patriarchy is one. The recognition that patriarchy works like other systems of oppression, like racism and capitalism, to value some people and brutalise others is another area of agreement. Like other systems of oppression, it also requires the support of many members of the groups it oppresses.'― Pumla Dineo Gqola, Reflecting Rogue: Inside the Mind of a Feminist Professor Pumla Dineo Gqola is currently the Dean of Research at the University of Fort Hare. Prof Gqola’s illustrious career spans full-time academic and research positions at several South African universities and other institutions, she started off as a junior lecturer and rose to the rank of senior lecturer at the University of Free State before she joined Human Science Research Council as a Chief Research Specialist. She then joined Meraka institute at the council for Scientific and industrial research. As a gender activist, award-winning author and full professor, Pumla Dineo Gqola has written extensively for both local and international academic journals. She is the author of four books including the seminal work “Rape: A South African Nightmare”. In an impromptu podcast recording, Prof Gqola sat down with the Cheeky Natives to discuss her work as a gender activist, scholar and black feminist. This episode was particularly moving as it was recorded in Cape Town in the week of Uyinene Mrwetyana’s harrowing assault and murder among that of numerous South African womxn and children. In a frank and powerful conversation, the Cheeky Natives and Prof Gqola sat down to discuss what it means to be a country in crisis, the racialised nature of violence and the nightmare in which South African womxn are trapped in. In a wide-ranging discussion regarding her scholarship and impressive publication history, we explored what it means to be a renegade and pioneer and yet belong so deeply to one’s self. The politics of self-ownership for Black womxn who are feminist activists is an entire thesis. Follow her on Twitter @feminist_rogue

61 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Professor Pumla Dineo Gqola: Feminist Rogue

Dr Ainehi Edoro-Glines: Brittle Paper

African literature is changing’ - Brittle Paper Brittle Paper is your go-to site for African writing and literary culture. Brittle Paper brings you all the latest news and juicy updates on publications, authors, events, prizes, and lifestyle. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram (@brittlepaper) and sign up for our "I love African Literature" newsletter. Brittle Paper states that ‘the current generation of African readers are driven more by their tastes and passions than by allegiance to some abstract political idea. They are young, open, and unconventional in their interests. They are social media savvy and dependent on mobile technology for media consumption. This has led to the popularity of shorter writings—flash fiction, online story series, and digital imprints of mass-market novellas. The obsession with realist fiction that defined older generations has given way to an avid interest in speculative writing—fantasy, science fiction— but also in experimental narratives, pulp-fiction, and other offbeat genres.’ And as a result, Brittle Paper became a literary project designed to adapt African literary culture that is dynamic and adaptable. Dr Ainehi Edoro-Glines is the founder and Editor of Brittle Paper, a leading online platform dedicated to African writing and literary culture. She is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she teaches and researches on African literature, political theory, and literature in social media. She was named by OkayAfrica as one of its top women in African literature 2018. While in the stunning Madison, Dr Alma-Nalisha Cele connected with Dr Edoro-Glines and discussed her life goals of bringing African literature to the front and what it means to build our own platforms for critical engagement with African literature. Of course, the discussion would’ve been incomplete without delving into “that” essay. Her current book project is titled “Forest Imaginaries: How African Novels Think.” She also writes essays and commentaries about contemporary African literary culture in mainstream publications such as The Guardian and Africa is a Country. Dr Edoro-Glines is profoundly influenced by the literary icon, Chinua Achebe. Her life goal has been to bring African literature to the forefront, and more specifically to bring a fresh perspective to the study of the late Nigerian novelist's work. Her article on Things Fall Apart is forthcoming in The Cambridge Journal of Postcolonial Literary Enquiry. Follow Brittle Paper on Twitter and Instagram (@brittlepaper) and you can also visit their website www. brittlepaper.com

64 MINNOV 15
Comments
Dr Ainehi Edoro-Glines: Brittle Paper

Nicole Dennis -Benn: Patsy

“Just two years shy of thirty, Patsy has nothing to show for it besides the flimsy brown envelope that she uses to shade herself from the white-hot glare of the sun. the envelope contains all her papers — from birth certificate to vaccination records. But most importantly, it carries her dream, a dream every Jamaican of a certain social ranking shares: boarding an airplane to America. For the destination, and for the ability to fly.” – Nicole Dennis-Benn Patsy is a book that chronicles the life of the protagonist Patsy, who leaves Jamaica to chase the America dream. Her leaving for ‘green pastures’ means leaving her daughter behind. This shock is a wonderful plot device as it forces readers to examine their socialised understanding of motherhood and what ideal mothering looks like. Throughout the story, we were taken on a haunting journey that both answers and asks questions about those who make the pilgrimage for a better life and those who stay. This is an immigrant story but not for the western gaze. In a true reflection of her prodigious talent, Nicole confronts difficult themes with grace and humanity asking the readers to push themselves beyond their ideas of what it takes to make a difficult decision. In a poignant, thoughtful and exciting podcast, The Cheeky Natives sat with the brilliant Nicole Dennis-Benn to explore the themes of isolation, abandonment, immigration, the ‘American dream’, racism, homophobia and the challenges of being Black, alive and queer in any space. In some parts, this conversation was an exploration of the weight it takes to be a difficult woman making selfish decisions and in many other parts, it was excavation on the intersection of race, sexuality, immigration and the weight of becoming. Nicole Dennis-Benn is a brilliant writer giving voice and documenting the untold stories of the ‘undocumented’. In this conversation, The Cheeky Natives excavated her politics, writing and what it means to hold the weight of an entire community’s expectation. Her previous debut was ‘Here comes the sun’ which was heralded as exploitation of racism, sexuality and other difficult themes. She continues to do the important work in her sophomore novel. Fresh off her second visit to Open Book Festival in Cape Town, The Cheeky Natives were thrilled to have this conversation before the launch of her latest work in Johannesburg. A review in the New York Times affirms that “You’ll come to know Nicole Dennis-Benn’s characters as intimately as you would a lover. They are refined in their humanity and depth.”

59 MINOCT 13
Comments
Nicole Dennis -Benn: Patsy

Vanessa Govender: Beaten but not Broken

“This is my story. This happened to me. Who he is, is irrelevant. He could be the boy next door, a street sweeper or your son – he could be anyone. I refuse to make this story about him or who he is. He is no different from any abusive man. His name is irrelevant. What he did though, is relevant. What he did to me – over and over again – is very relevant.” – Vanessa Govender Beaten but not Broken by Vanessa Govender is a harrowing story. In recent weeks, we have seen the resurfacing of conversation about Gender-Based Violence following the deaths of a number of womxn, killed by men. Gender-Based Violence in South Africa is alarmingly high. It is reported that a womxn dies every 3 hours. In this memoir, Vanessa recounts her own experience. Vanessa writes: “This is South Africa. My story is one of hundreds of thousands of women, many of whom are silent and don’t have the courage to speak out because they are simply too afraid. I know their fear. I’ve known it, lived with it all these years, following me, hanging over my shoulders, filling my head.” Vanessa Govender grew up in a conservative Indian community. This community ostracised Vanessa because she was dark-skinned. The colour of Vanessa’s skin meant that she was the victim of childhood bullying and often low self-esteem issues that followed her into her adult life. Vanessa gives us a glimpse of the brutally that took place while she was in a relationship with a colleague in her years as a journalist. She recounts the beating, the sexual assaults and the rape that took place. In this story, Vanessa brings to light that class and fame does not necessarily protect you from the brutality of intimate partner violence. The story retells the dark years of the violence and how often many people were complacent in assisting Vanessa. The memoir allows tells a story of healing, of love and hope. We challenge Vanessa on the idea of nonracialism and ask her how it works in the world, where race has polarised almost every fabric of society. This conversation was challenging and heart-breaking in many parts but also very necessary to bring to light the horror of Gender-Based Violence.

52 MINSEP 19
Comments
Vanessa Govender: Beaten but not Broken

Desiree-Anne Martin: We don't Talk About it Ever

‘But I am done with deceit. Lies no longer hold any allure for me. Now I seek true words that will, somehow, begin to heal that which has broken.’ – Desiree – Anne Martin (@believe_deeply). ‘We Don't Talk About It. Ever' is Desiree-Anne Martin’s powerful, harrowing, and poignant portrayal of her journey from an addict to an author. Heart-breaking in some parts but also so inspiring, she takes us through this journey in an intimate and honest revelation of the road to destruction and the journey to redemption. In a powerful but quiet way, Desiree-Anne shows just how the wounds of childhood translate into adult traumas. But in a wonderful homage to the power of healing, Desiree-Anne’s journey is also one of hope. She sat with The Cheeky Natives to discuss her book ‘We don’t talk about it. Ever’ And what it means to journey through the most hopeless of situations from substance abuse to toxic relationships. Desiree-Anne’s book is a triumphant journey.

62 MINAUG 31
Comments
Desiree-Anne Martin: We don't Talk About it Ever

Sisonke Msimang: The Resurrection of Winnie Mandela

‘With razor-sharp insight, Msimang writes in a reflective tone that contains both heartbreak and humour, as she navigates some often-overlooked complexities surrounding race, womanhood and class.’ – Cher Tan, Books and Publishing Just some of the words that come to mind when thinking of Sisonke Msimang’s second book ‘The Resurrection of Winnie Mandela’ Written in response to her passing of Winnie Mandela, Sisonke’s book is haunting and inspiring. In answering the question of redemption as it comes to iconic, powerful Black womxn, Sisonke is also asking the reader questions on our morality. The book written in the second person contextualises Winnie Mandela’s life from before she was born to when she died. Sisonke skillfully and poetically converses with Winnie by reclaiming her and celebrating her. She writes about how Winnie encounter powerful womxn upon arriving in Joburg dispelling the myth that Winnie became political because of Nelson. She writes about the moment Winnie saw Nelson, their love - showing us that theirs was a deep, profound love. Further, in the book, she writes about the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and how Winnie was treated at this Commission, this allows us to question the true nature of the TRC and whether it was about truth. In the same breath, she holds Winnie to account by writing about the deaths of the 18 boys that Winnie may have been involved in. In this, she demands of us to hold Winnie to account for these deaths and to take some ownership in the passing of these boys. She writes about the mothers of these children and how they came head to head with Winnie demanding the truth. In this book, Sisonke encourages us to use Winnie’s life to think about nation-building and Blackwomxnhood. It’s a powerful conversation about reclaiming our heroes.

64 MINAUG 12
Comments
Sisonke Msimang: The Resurrection of Winnie Mandela

Landa Mabenge: Becoming Him: a Trans memoir of Triumph

‘But humility is a work of progress and there are times when I need to work on practising tolerance. Whenever individuals question my ‘genitals’ I am reminded of how blinkered and obsessed with labels we humans are. Whatever lies between my legs, whether I sit or stand when I pee, my genitals are what they are and they serve their purpose. Whatever the shape, size or name of them, and whether I have chosen to surgically align my body to my identity or not, I remain the man I have always been.’ - Landa Mabenge In his memoir, ‘Becoming Him’, Landa Mabenge details his journey as the first transgender man to have his surgical transition paid for by his medical aid. From childhood, Landa knew that how he looked on the outside was not aligned with how he felt on the inside. These feelings were particularly exacerbated in puberty. He recalls the confusion and trauma that came with all these changes and the inability to vocalise how he felt. His childhood was not an easy one either. A childhood characterised by abandonment, separation, and constant, unending abuse meant that these changes were only exacerbated. In a deeply personal account, Landa also takes us through his time at UCT, highlighting the toll on his mental health that the journey of self-discovery took. There is a powerful commentary on themes of abuse, self-discovery and uncomfortable change, both inside and outside. This dynamic of change is highlighted in Landa’s relationship with his loved ones, in those who choose to support and those who do not. The question of what it means to have to reckon with toxicity from those closest to us is a painful topic that Landa explores with poise. Landa’s story represents so many of the facets of what is good about the human experience. Tenacity, resilience and the courage it takes to become. Groundbreaking. Poignant and inspirational.

60 MINJUL 22
Comments
Landa Mabenge: Becoming Him: a Trans memoir of Triumph

Rekgotsofetse Chikane: Breaking a Rainbow, Building a Nation

“Whiteness seeks to remove us from its embrace because we threaten it. We place its position at the centre at risk when we dare to usurp it rather than simply remain constant in relation to it. Exerting my identity undermines the identity of whiteness. Yet exerting my identity calls into question my commitment to follow this feeling of emancipation from whiteness to its natural conclusion. It challenges whether or not I am willing to dismantle the system in which I exist to place myself in the centre at the expense of whiteness and the social leverage it has afforded me. This uncertainty of the coconut’s commitment begs the question: as a coconut, are you willing to slide down the snake to join those who have been excluded from the born-free ladder and assist them in the revolution, the chimurenga?’ - Rekgotsofetse Chikane These words end the first chapter of Rekgotsofetse Chikane’s Breaking a Rainbow, Building a Nation: #The Politics behind #MustFallMovements Rekgotsofetse Chik...

52 MINJUN 28
Comments
Rekgotsofetse Chikane: Breaking a Rainbow, Building a Nation

Sihle Bolani: We Are The Ones We Need

“But I’ve had time now to really think about the issue of racism, abuse, and discrimination against black professionals in the workplace, as a system, because that’s exactly what it is. A system. Designed to maintain the status quo, this system ensures that power imbalance remains unchanged.” – Sihle Bolani Sihle Bolani invited us into her life in a deeply personal way. She tells a story about her time in corporate. Her book written in the first person, in a journal/diary-like way, a method she intentionally chooses. She delves into the challenges faced by her and what she believes many Black professionals in South Africa’s corporate environment experience as well. Her book focuses on themes that include structural racism in organisations; the role executives play in sustaining discriminatory practices; pay discrimination; the emotional and psychological trauma suffered by Black professionals as a result of corporate abuse and the suppression of black talent, especially Black womxn. In this podcast, we sat down with Sihle to speak about her book. We spoke about the method of writing the book, white womxn in corporate, bullying, constructive dismissal, racism, sexism. We spoke about the role of Black executives and their complicity in perpetuating inequality. Sihle also offers us her way forward, a call to action. We spoke about some elements of the call to action. She believes that these actions can go a long way to dismantle systems of oppression. A deeply insightful, personal conversation filled with ‘aha’ moments. This episode continues conversations about racism, sexism and the workplace and how we can continue to fight to dismantle them.

61 MINJUN 1
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Sihle Bolani: We Are The Ones We Need

Malebo Sephodi: Miss Behave

‘Well-behaved women seldom make history.’ -@malebosephodi writes deeply on the way this quote by Laurel Thatcher has influenced her life and writing. The Cheeky Natives sat down with the magical Malebo Sephodi, author of Miss Behave. Miss Behave is an award-winning text on a Black feminist journey to consciousness. Graceful and so relatable, Miss Behave is in part a journal and a love letter to black womxn of all ages. Far too often, in the age of wokeness, there’s been almost an absence of acknowledgement of the stages of awakening that even our most woke favourites have gone through. Miss Behave is an excellent example of these different stages. With sensitivity and awareness that only someone who's encountered the full depth of what Ntozake Shange describes as the metaphysical experience that is being a Black womxn, Malebo writes on the far-reaching themes of patriarchy, misogynoir and navigating relationships in the bodies Black womxn inhabit. This book has womxn, young and old snapping their fingers in formation at so many of the micro-aggressions detailed. There’s a gold mine of ‘aha’ moments in Miss Behave. Miss Behave is so much more than just a book. It’s a movement, having generated powerful conversations everywhere in its wake following its release. What was particularly striking about this book is the use of accessible language to explain academic concepts such as patriarchy and body shaming, proving that the academy doesn’t always have to be inaccessible. In a live podcast, Malebo sat with the Cheeky Natives as we waxed lyrical on the themes of patriarchy, corporate racism and the difficulties of navigating this world in bodies such as ours. Fun, challenging and thought-provoking.

91 MINMAY 3
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Malebo Sephodi: Miss Behave
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