Mieliepop 2018


The Republic of Mieliepop 2018 took place from 21 to 24 March, hosted in the luscious green fields of Tolderia resort in Lothair, Mpumalanga. Although the sunshine was hidden behind a shield of rain clouds, the show did indeed go on.  

Wednesday 21 March saw festival goers flocking to camping grounds. Tents went up, and a few impressive rafts were constructed. Through the food village, a wide variety of stalls lined up along the lake shore. Sundown saw party rockers flock to the main bar for a DJ show down, with beer on tap from one of the local breweries, Red Rock Breweries. The night faded away as rain began to fall, and people danced without a care.  

On Thursday, the sun did not rise to meet local citizens of the Republic. Instead rain and a chill hung over tents, yet little changed. Raincoats were adorned, but music was playing, and the air smelled still of joy and festivity. Citizens lined up at the various stations in the food village to grab a bite, before curing their hangovers at the Cool in the Pool dance floor, regardless of the absence of bikini weather. At the same time, other citizens took a more humorous start to their days, by attending the daily comedy show hosted at the bar stage. The comedians, organised by Werner Cloete were a favourite of many, and resulted in large amounts of laughter in the air.

Soon it was time for the main stage to come alive, as Strait Jackal took to the stage, breathing air into the lungs of those left sleeping and waiting. Followed by the sounds of Go Barefoot, and Deon Bakkes & The Stolen Horses, soon the Republic of Mieliepop was alive and screaming, as even more citizens arrived and settled the grounds. The night continued to boom at the Rave Cave, while others danced away at the Willow Stage, careless about the cold and mud forming on the grounds.

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Sci-fi films to look out for

Lorinda Marrian

In a world where science-fiction movies make up almost every second movie in cinemas, there is an abundance of films for fans to watch. Perdeby has put together a list of some of the most promising and anticipated sci-fi films for the rest of the year.

Ready Player One

Steven Spielberg directs this sci-fi action adventure film that takes place in a dystopian universe in the year 2045 where people escape their harsh lives through the virtual reality world called The Oasis. The film follows the story of the un ­likely hero, the young Wade Watts, as he seeks to take control of the virtual world by hunting for a digital Easter egg left behind by the Oasis’ creator. The film will be released on 29 March.

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Feminism Is Jen Thorpe

Claudine Noppe

What does it mean to be a feminist in South Africa? Is there even a need for feminism in South Africa? Finally, South African feminists can rejoice as there is a book that answers all these questions and more. Feminism Is was released on 26 February and explores the stories of everyday South African feminists. The anthology was edited by Jen Thorpe.

The first part of the book explores feminist inspirations. With stories ranging from motherhood and feminism, an ode to Zadie Smith and how feminism changed the authors’s lives, one essay particularly names Adrienne Rich as the author, Colleen Higgs’, feminist inspiration. “Here I want to write about how a radical feminist poet, old enough to be my mother, influenced my life,” Higgs writes in her contribution to Feminism Is. The second part of the book deals with the inclusions and exclusions of the feminist movement. Aaisha Dadi Patel provides a very important view in her essay, Feminism is Muslim women talking back. In her story she explains that “Muslim women come in all shapes, sizes, nationalities and races. ‘Muslim women’ does not equal brown-veiled women.” Patel goes on to say that liberal feminists do not always comprehend this and that is why “many Muslim women reject the word ‘feminism’.”

Read more: Feminism Is Jen Thorpe

UP’s Poets: ‘Poetry is central to our culture’

On 21 March, we celebrated the annual World Poetry Day, paying tribute to all past, present and future poets. In honour of this day, Perdeby spoke to some published poets who are students, or were students at UP.


Dewald Steyn

Currently an assistant lecturer in the Department of English, Dewald Steyn’s first poem was published in New Contrast in 2015. Steyn remembers writing for the first time during primary school as few poems were published in his school’s yearbook, with one of his included. He became attracted to poetry because of its concise precision, and how he felt that it shapes language with dexterity. However, Steyn said he is a fan of long poems like the epic works of Homer and John Milton’s “Paradise Lost”. Other poets to have influenced Steyn include romantics such as Mary Shelley, John Keats, as well as Victorian poets Robert Browning and Alfred Tennyson. Dewald Steyn also expressed admiration for poets of the 20th century, specifically James Merrill, Hart Crane and John Ashbery. Steyn feels poetry has a vital role in our fast-evolving modern world where a tweet of 140 characters says a lot, but a haiku of 17 syllables can say just as much or more. “Poetry taps into our need to explain the world to ourselves and others, and it does so in a way that can be beautiful, surprising, absurd, or even ugly, but always in a way that makes you think or feel differently.”

Read more: UP’s Poets: ‘Poetry is central to our culture’

Entertainment Bites 26 March 2018

Dispute over the new Frida Kahlo Barbie doll

Relatives of the late Mexican artist Frida Kahlo are in a dispute with the American toy company Mattel about the production of a doll in her image. The doll is part of the “Inspiring Women” series that was launched on Thursday 8 March, in honour of International Women’s Day. Kahlo’s niece, Mara Romeo Pinedo, and her daughter, Mara de Anda Romeo, have since threatened to take legal action, saying that Mattel does not have the rights to use Kahlo’s image. The doll’s appearance has also been subject to critique, with complaints that the doll does not accurately reflect Kahlo’s heavy eyebrows or elaborate Tehuana-style dresses.

Read more: Entertainment Bites 26 March 2018


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