By Mrs Noku Dlamini
Director of Transformation: College
The sanctity of birds is frequently related to their ability to fly close to the heavens and get wisdom from a different perspective. That is why I was so thrilled when Gifford “Giffy” Duminy proposed birds as our symbol of transformation at Clifton. That is what being transformed is about, being able to take on multi perspectives and be empathetic.
Alongside many tragedies caused by the pandemic, the closing of theatres and the shackling of The Arts for so long, has been a cause of much heartache. Just as the livelihoods of so many professional performers were unravelling, our own young performers were missing out on vital parts of their development. How does one promote performance when one cannot have an audience or even performers in close proximity for extended periods? The ancient Greek actors famously wore masks but… it is fair to say, of an entirely different sort!
The lights came on, the speakers buzzed, the stage wall received paint, costumes were dusted off, props precisely placed – the rehearsal of lines echoing on the empty walls of the auditorium…For the first time in more than a year, the curtains of the Sutcliffe theatre opened on 13 May for one evening of theatre.
This year’s annual production was of Athol Fugard’s autobiographical play, “‘Master Harold’ … and the boys”. The audience was transported to a tearoom in St George’s Park, Port Elizabeth in the 1950s where they witnessed the defining moment in Hally’s life.
At the conclusion of the Human Rights Day assembly on Friday, the College boys signed the Clifton Discrimination Proclamation that was formulated by the Transformation and Diversity team.
Afterwards, the proclamation plaque was unveiled in the Mitchell Square by Mr Knowles and Head Boy, George Tattari. Mrs Dlamini referred to the journey of transformation and diversity at Clifton and congratulated the boys for their bravery and commitment to the process.
There are currently some 29 female leaders in countries or self-ruling territories. Of the 25 monarchies, there are reigning Queens in at least two countries: Denmark and the United Kingdom – and the latter is represented by female Governor Generals in 4 of the other 15 countries in which she is also Queen. There are 13 female Presidents. There are also female Prime Ministers. The point I am trying to make with this digression really concerns itself – in its simplest form – with the concept of female leadership as role-models to a new generation of young people.
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
– George Santayana
Today, history forms a huge component of human knowledge in general, alongside cultural and scientific knowledge, both of which overlap with history. Historians place a great emphasis on primary sources; people writing based on events they or their immediate friends actually experienced, rather than secondary sources, writing merely based on hearsay.
Also important are comparisons between primary sources. Without comparisons, it can be difficult to validate historical claims.