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Cultured ViolenceNarrative, Social Suffering, and Engendering Human Rights in Contemporary South Africa$
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Rosemary Jolly

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9781846312137

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846315244

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Men ‘Not Feeling Good’: The Dilemmas of Hyper-masculinity in the Era of HIV/AIDS

Men ‘Not Feeling Good’: The Dilemmas of Hyper-masculinity in the Era of HIV/AIDS

(p.117) Chapter 4 Men ‘Not Feeling Good’: The Dilemmas of Hyper-masculinity in the Era of HIV/AIDS
Cultured Violence
Liverpool University Press

This chapter examines the question of male agency in post-apartheid South Africa. It argues that fear of the shame brought about by entry into the domain of the speakable and the subject's simultaneous bearing witness to her desubjectification offer insights into men's specific, complex vulnerability within the post-apartheid setting. This vulnerability can result either in violence or positive resilience. In order to understand the power of deeper psychological anxieties and wider social structures that promote domination and subordination in contemporary South Africa, the chapter analyses narratives of masculine vulnerability by looking at the constitutional declaration of women's rights and the challenges presented by the phenomenon of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. It also discusses the politics arising from the combination of liberal economic policy, the African Renaissance, and the AIDS denialism of South African President Thabo Mbeki. Finally, the chapter focuses on Phaswane Mpe's 2001 novel Welcome to Our Hillbrow and considers Jacob Zuma, former Deputy President of South Africa, as an explicit representative of a particularly highly profiled image of Zulu masculinity.

Keywords:   South Africa, HIV/AIDS epidemic, masculinity, politics, economic policy, African Renaissance, Thabo Mbeki, Jacob Zuma, Phaswane Mpe, Our Hillbrow

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