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UKZN Press

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Introducing Ekhaya: The Politics of Home in KwaZulu-Natal by Meghan Healy-Clancy and Jason Hickel

EkhayaNew from UKZN Press Ekhaya: The Politics of Home in KwaZulu-Natal by Meghan Healy-Clancy and Jason Hickel:

This book examines the African home as a key site of struggle in the making of modern KwaZulu-Natal, a South African province that instantiates in extreme form many of the transformations that shaped the colonial world. Its essays explore major themes in African and global history, including the colonial manipulation of kinship and the exploitation of labour, modernist practices of social engineering and the changes wrought within intimate relationships by post-industrial decline.

Ranging from the rural to the urban and the pre-colonial era to the presidency of Jacob Zuma, this volume emphasises the affective and ideological dimensions of ikhaya. It offers insight into how the home, which embodies both modernist aspirations and nostalgic longings for the past, has become the touchstone for popular discontent and political activism in recent decades. Just as colonialism in South Africa was a colonialism of the home, so too politics in South Africa are a politics of the home.

“Ekhaya is an excellent and a very timely collection. The essays serve as invaluable reminders of the long histories and complicated political contests that lie behind ongoing debates on proper and permissible forms of family life in this region of South Africa.”

— Hylton White, Department of Anthropology, University of the Witwatersrand

About the author

Meghan Healy-Clancy is a social historian trained at Harvard University, where she now teaches in the programs in History and Literature and in Social Studies. She has published articles on the politics of gender in South African history and is the author of A World of Their Own, a book about the meaning of black women’s education in South Africa.

Jason Hickel received his PhD in Anthropology from the University of Virginia and now teaches at the London School of Economics. His research focuses on how the values that underpin liberal democracy are contested and resisted in South Africa. He also writes critical commentary and analysis for popular outlets including Al Jazeera, Le Monde Diplomatique, and The Africa Report.

Book details


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