International Week 2015
Click here for the International Week Programme 2015
International Office News
Over the past fortnight our country has witnessed terrible violence perpetrated against fellow human beings from other parts of the continent and
International Parade 2015
Beginning from the Botanical Gardens, Lucas Avenue, moving through High street to the City Hall, and ending at the Great Field
Time: 09:30 for 10:00
Venue: Entrance to the Botanical Gardens
Rhodes was the first University to host an International Parade and we celebrated our fifth one this year. The intention was to create a CELEBRATORY, positive space for people from different backgrounds, cultures, countries and lifestyles to come together.On the day we celebrated the DIVERSITY found in our community!
The Paraders were dressed to reflect the country they were representing with costumes, colours and flags.
Screening of Khalo Matabane's: A Letter To Nelson Mandela Feature film
The International Office and the Unit for the Humanities at Rhodes University (UHURU) hosted Mr. Khalo Matabane, a respected South African film maker to screen and discuss his latest documentary Nelson Mandela: the myth and me at Rhodes University as part of the International Week celebrations.
The documentary is a personal odyssey that interrogates the meaning of freedom, reconciliation and forgiveness in South Africa through an imaginary letter to Nelson Mandela and conversations with some of the renowned politicians, public intellectuals and artists from all quarters of the world.
The film was screening at a revitalized political atmosphere in South Africa, where there’s a rise of students’ movement across the country, from UCT: Rhodes Must Fall to Black Students Movement at Rhodes University.
Mr. Manosa Nthunya, one of the speakers on the panel offered a fervent response to the film, linking it with the current political discourse about transformation in contemporary South Africa, ranging from the Rhodes name change to the removal of statues.
In his response Nthunya proposed for an ironic way of engaging with the past arguing that by doing so, one allows him/herself for a deeper reflection on the complexities that inform every life.
“I was therefore deeply troubled that when pushed to the corner, the senate and council at UCT agreed that the statue be removed,” said Nthunywa, “I thought we had crisis in our democracy”
He continued to argue that what he had in fact presumed would have been a responsible response the university could have sent out is that “all students should learn, relentlessly learn how to live with irony”
Nelson Mandela: the myth and me, an emotionally gripping flim, explores and leaves a behind a plethora of dilemmas with no clear or definite answers that confirm what the audience would want to think.
Matabane explained that creating a dilemma for the audience is a deliberate and a striking
thing about art. “I give you the gift of a dilemma and crisis when you’re watching this film because I’m supposed to make you doubt when you’re watching”
Similar to Matabane, Nthunya argued that an appreciation of irony always makes a call for deeper thinking.
“To be human is to be interpolated within contradictory contradictions that constitute the possibility of human existence itself”
In each segment of the three themes: freedom, reconciliation and forgiveness, the director leaves many dilemmas for the audience to think about, but one of the most striking one lies along the forgiveness theme.
“When you have to live with the realities of peace on a day-to-day basis, and you see the level of poverty, you ask: is it worth it? Is the peace worth it? Especially in a society where those who were responsible for the atrocities do not even acknowledge that is it the consequence of their own actions?” explained Matabane.
Describing how he feels about the character that is being explored in the film, Mr. Matabane said he thinks of Mandela as a mirror offering people an opportunity to reflect on human nature.
“I think Madiba offers us an opportunity to reflect on the possibility of human nature, and that indeed we can become better human beings even at a cost of ourselves”
-- by Sanele Ntshingana