South african dating and marriage customs
In males, this took the form of overbearing militarised machismo, of which the associated social practices upheld the white nationalist state’s values.
In females, it led to a cringing masochistic subservience, exclusively bound to the hearth and the crib.
The physical and mental development of children was impaired through self-reinforcing cycles of bad mothering in destitute communities.
Conservative and punitive models of education meant that oppressive, abusive and authoritarian behaviour could easily be internalised by those on the receiving end.
Unwholesome images of both men and women were constructed under both black and white chauvinistic nationalisms.
Both traditional and Christian religions apportioned men and women into vastly asymmetrical gender roles.
At best, this becomes manifest in a general attitude of suspicion, distrust, barely suppressed aggression and a readiness to defend bodily integrity with every means at hand.
At the worst it flares up during incidents of road-rage, temper tantrums and public fisticuffs or racist shooting sprees and family murders.
These are the social contexts Oscar Pistorius grew up in and in which he found himself hailed as the handicapped miracle boy who through his own exorbitant physical and mental efforts and punishing routines of endurance overcame the worst of odds.
I am a writer, and so am offering here my personal insight and experience.
My feeling is that a large percentage of South African males of whatever hue, class or political persuasion are suffering from extreme forms of stress.
Marlene van Niekerk does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.
Stellenbosch University provides support as an endorsing partner of The Conversation AFRICA.Any analysis aiming to develop a single, all-encompassing diagnosis of the endemic violence in South Africa has to take into account many different aspects.