Enemies and Citizens of the State: Die Boeremag as the Face of Postapartheid Otherness
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This examination is a case study analysis of the Mail & Guardian’s news coverage surrounding the ongoing trial of members of the separatist group, die Boeremag. The 22 defendants stand accused of treason and 41 other criminal charges for the 2002 bombings of Soweto and conspiring to establish an independent Boer state. Utilizing a race critical lens, this analysis looks at these news representations of Afrikaner nationalists to glean insight into how law, race and racism can imbricate public understandings crime, specifically, in this case, domestic terrorism. It draws attention to the ways in which this fundamentalist group emerges as a repugnant Other and interrogates their roles within the “imagined” postapartheid South African community, the newspaper’s target audience. After explicating these dynamics, the paper concludes with a discussion of how this case study relates to practical dilemmas that stem from the utopian ideologies of reconciliation and nonracialism.
KeywordsRestorative Justice Hate Crime News Coverage White Nation White Voter
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