On Speaking to Violence in Post-Apartheid Schools
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Post-apartheid South African schools are contending with unprecedented incidents and rates of violence that have not only brought untold humiliation to learners and teachers alike but have, in many instances, forced schools to redefine the way in which they function, and indeed, if they function. Repeated forms of condemnation, policy re-strategising and punitive measures have not only been inadequate, but have laid bare the sheer unpredictability of violence and its forms. In offering a dual-dialogue – one in addressing violence and the other directed at the inadequate response from education authorities to violence – we offer an interpretative analysis on the one hand, of how to think about violence, and on the other hand, about how a citizenship education of becoming can deal with the unpredictable consequences of violence in its own potentiality. We commence by looking at violence in South African schools, followed by an exploration of encounters, and summoning others to speech as a means through which to speak to violence.
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