I have been on campus for a relatively short time, but in that time I have realised a few things.
One of them is that things are mostly ignored. Or are addressed very superficially, and then progress so slowly that it is barely noticeable. I don’t think this is a problem unique to Stellenbosch University; indeed, I think it is a much higher level problem that can be seen in the rising of conservative populism across the world, and the anxiousness of the South African political millieu.
But we can try and work from the bottom upwards – thus, iLizwi.
We are a bunch of students, each with differing opinions and interests regarding a wide variety of subjects, but united in our belief that there is a need for a platform for progressive discourse. In all of our experiences, we have found that the issues we would like to engage with are only addressed in spaces where such discourse is ineffectual. Sometimes it feels as if we have found the perfect solution to a problem, if only the HK, University, or Government would listen!
If only it were that easy…
You can read all about iLizwi on our About page. But in short, this is a project that comes from the desire for open, critical, and effective discourse.
Another thing I have learned is that the official narrative is not inclusive. I would caution to say that this is for a lack of trying, however, but I do believe that many marginalised stories have yet to surface in the Stellenbosch (and South African) media landscape.
This is our project to try and do the good we believe is missing, or have been neglected.