Professor Pumla Dineo Gqola: Feminist Rogue

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‘While there are many feminist strands, which is to say different kinds of feminism, there are also many core principles. The commitment to actively oppose and end patriarchy is one. The recognition that patriarchy works like other systems of oppression, like racism and capitalism, to value some people and brutalise others is another area of agreement. Like other systems of oppression, it also requires the support of many members of the groups it oppresses.’― Pumla Dineo Gqola, Reflecting Rogue: Inside the Mind of a Feminist

Professor Pumla Dineo Gqola is currently the Dean of Research at the University of Fort Hare. Prof Gqola’s illustrious career spans full-time academic and research positions at several South African universities and other institutions, she started off as a junior lecturer and rose to the rank of senior lecturer at the University of Free State before she joined Human Science Research Council as a Chief Research Specialist. She then joined Meraka institute at the council for Scientific and industrial research.

As a gender activist, award-winning author and full professor, Pumla Dineo Gqola has written extensively for both local and international academic journals. She is the author of four books including the seminal work “Rape: A South African Nightmare”.

In an impromptu podcast recording, Prof Gqola sat down with the Cheeky Natives to discuss her work as a gender activist, scholar and black feminist. This episode was particularly moving as it was recorded in Cape Town in the week of Uyinene Mrwetyana’s harrowing assault and murder among that of numerous South African womxn and children. In a frank and powerful conversation, the Cheeky Natives and Prof Gqola sat down to discuss what it means to be a country in crisis, the racialised nature of violence and the nightmare in which South African womxn are trapped in.

In a wide-ranging discussion regarding her scholarship and impressive publication history, we explored what it means to be a renegade and pioneer and yet belong so deeply to one’s self. The politics of self-ownership for Black womxn who are feminist activists is an entire thesis.

Follow her on Twitter @feminist_rogue

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