“This is My Route!” Race, Entitlement and Gay Pride in South Africa

By T.J. Tallie and Maria Hengeveld
It’s been a week since the now infamous events of the Joburg Pride Parade, where the organization One in Nine attempted to disrupt the parade in order to protest both systemic violence targeting black lesbians in South Africa and the commercialization of the Pride event itself. The heart of the protest, calling for one minute of silence for black queer victims of violence, was met by animosity and additional violence from the predominantly white attendees. Reading media reports of the event itself, we are reminded of the complexities of Marikana; in the days and weeks following the mining massacre, there was no clear or easy story, but rather multiple histories of capitalism, violence, state repression, and brutality, each jostling against each other and refracting in confusing new realities. Yet as Brett has stated on this site, this “was not a crime and a tragedy on the scale of Marikana. It was not even startling and unusual.” But it was gripping to see it captured so vividly on film, where both the violence and fearful, misguided claims of legitimacy are revealed in such simple, disheartening ways. Continue reading