ukuphucuka nobuqaba / being civilised and a barbarian

uma into kungeyabelungu izoba nomantshingelani ogel noboy. ihlala ihlanzekile ikhuselekile kungekho s’phithiphithi. ngaleyondlela umuntu ontsundu ucabanga ukuthi yiyo umpucuko nokuthi umuntu ontsundu eyiqaba ngoba engcolisa entshontsha ehlala empintshekile.

umuntu ontsundu ucabanga ukuthi impucuko iyimpucuko ngoba ikhandelwe noma iphethwe ngabelungu. umuntu ontsundu ugcina enyanya abanye abantsundu. ezinyanya naye okwakhe ngoba ecabanga ukuthi uyisehluleki nokuthi akanampucuko.

lowo muntu ontsundu ufuna ukuphucuka naye abenjenga belungu. uma esendaweni enomntshingelani noma enogel noboy uzizwa sekaphumelele. kodwa kuphinda kube nokungazizwa kahle ngoba uyazizonda akacabangi afanelwe yimpucuko yabelungu. ngempela ayimfanele.

ngoba leyompucuko yakhwe phekwa mathambo wabantu abantsundu abangasoze bakunande konke lobobuhle ababusebenzele kanzima. lempucuko yakhwe ngenzondo kanti futhi iyandisa inzodo phakathi komntu ontsundu.

umuntu ontsundu kumele aqale phansi azicabangele ukuthi kusho ukuthini ukuphucuka. kumele alahle lempucuko ayilethelwe ngabelungu azibuze ukuthi ingabe singabantu abaphukile na. ingabe siphakeme si

[mid-script: it’s rare that when i write, words pop into my head in isizulu. that’s how anglicised i am. but that’s how the above essay came to me while sitting in a taxi. i’ve taken care to translate it below and look forward to your thoughts – be they in english or zulu. the translation was a bit of a challenge mainly because isizulu tends to be gender neutral so i had to make a decision about he/she… i went for she.

when something has been created or built for white people, it will often have security guards, maids and garden boys. it’ll always be clean, safe and not overwhelmed by crowds. because of that, a black person will look at it as if that’s what being civilised looks like and that black people are hoodlums because they dirty these places, they steal and living in cramped spaces.

the black person thinks that there isn’t progression and being civilised unless it’s made for and by white people. so the black person becomes disgusted by her own kind. she even hates herself because she thinks that she’s a failure of a human being because she isn’t civilised.

this black person wants to progress and be civilised too, like white people. when she is in a space made for white people, with its security guards, maids and garden boys, she believes she has arrived. but then again, she feels uncomfortable because she hates himself, she feels unworthy of the progression and civilization that belongs to white people. true enough she is unworthy.

this progression, civilisation, has been built on the backs of black people who will never enjoy all this beauty they have worked hard to build. this civilisation has been built with hate and it deepens black self-hate.

black people have to think for themselves and decide what being civilised means. she must throw away all these definitions about being civilised that were brought by white people and ask herself what this idea of civilisation really costs her and her kind.

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