The Contemporary Condition of Blackness in the Body of a Nation: An Insight to Subaltern bodies in a Democratic South Africa.
Ayanda Kubayi (Independent)

This paper offers an extensive reappraisal of the concept of blackness as an ontological symbol in a democratic South Africa. It unpacks, in detail, the historical shift in the perception of blackness in order to divulge the complexities that exist in the term itself, as opposed to the popularised assumption of a group ‘of a similar struggle’ in a democratic state. Moving away from how the state ought to behave in the era of democracy, the paper redirects its focus to the marriage between a democratic state and subaltern bodies in South African politics. As a representative democratic state, the author troubles governmentality in South Africa and the appropriation of victimhood as a means of gaining mass support. From this position, the paper questions the contemporary condition of blackness in relation to the narrative of a ‘common struggle’ and a ‘common enemy’.