From Cape Town: A Perspective on Nelson Mandela


Photo Courtesy of Janie Simonton

“Once Mandela dies, you need to head to a rural farm and hide in the bush for a while because things are going to get really violent.”

I’m currently studying abroad in Cape Town, South Africa, and have been hearing things like this all semester. This particular quote, from one of my friend’s host fathers, who was a detective during apartheid, is particularly haunting. His words aren’t the only ones that resonated, though. My neighbors in Langa, a township I stayed in for three weeks, speculated that Mandela’s death would mean instant race riots. People, she explained, are only keeping the peace to honor Mandela, but once he dies, there’s no reason not to unleash built-up aggression.

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Notes From Abroad: Cape Town, South Africa

For years, the Collegian has spotlighted the ups and downs of off-campus study in “Notes from Abroad.” This week, we’re borrowing our print-edition parent company’s regular feature to bring you Thea Kohout ’14’s account of life in Cape Town.

Thea sent us this JPG titled "TheaNoFace." Sounds appropriate.

Kohout sent us this snapshot titled “TheaNoFace.” Sounds about right.

My time in South Africa is quickly — too quickly, if you ask me — drawing to a close. I’m leaving in a week, after a four-month stint in this country at the bottom of the world, and I cannot even begin to wrap my head around the fact that I’ll be thrust into an Ohio winter in about a month. As I write this, I’m wearing a tank top, cut-offs and no shoes as a sultry South African summer is in full swing all around me. I can’t even remember what my winter coat looks like at this point. Continue reading