oratory speech

BY Aziwe Booi

Congratulations to Aziwe Booi on her excellent speech at the inter school oratory competition. We are proud. Thank you to Mrs Peltason and the spectators of the  High Schools' Speaking Challenge hosted by the SACEE ( EC)  at Alexander Road High School on Thursday , the 22nd of February. Here is the brilliant speech: I once read a book…
At times, we don’t realise how much of an effect media has on us. What we listen to, read and watch informs our decisions and opinions we carry about people and subjects. If all the media you ever consumed about Hitler was propaganda, then you’d think he was quite a great chap, wouldn’t you? Good evening Madame adjudicators ladies and gentlemen and fellow speakers.
We often think that we are an amalgamation of our physical attributes, our intellect, our backgrounds, where we come from and whatever social construct we define ourselves by. But in fact, we are an amalgam of what we take in from the media that surrounds our formative years, when form our opinions. For example, or perspectives on sex and race are all developed when we expose ourselves to sweeping generalizations without stopping to question the accuracy of such information. I’d like to give you an example. I have a five-year-old niece, and I’ve found that she moves seamlessly from for multi-racial and her not so multi-racial school because for there is no seem. She sees no difference because she is yet to be exposed to preconceptions about people.
When I thought about this I thought to go back and evaluate what media I have well, knocked back, how it may have had an impact on my opinions. I once picked up a book entitled ‘This book betrayed my brother ‘by Kagiso Lesego Malope which made me question where one’s loyalty should lie. Should it lie with a sibling, with whom you are bonded by blood or with the sisterhood to which you are tethered by the shared struggles of young black women. The protagonist, a young lady, knew that her brother was rapist. She also knew that rapists are the perpetual enemies of every young black woman including herself. She knew the stats, how a woman is raped every 2 minutes in South Africa. She also knew her brother’s prospects: bright his future was. Where should our loyalty lie? Does one take the moral high road or does one preserve and protect the family structure?
I once read a book called ‘House of Phalo’ by P. B, Peires. It made me consider my own culture, at least what I thought I knew of it. The history of our tribes within the Xhosa nation. Our history is almost as complex as our languages; as distinct as the clicks that form our names as the names of places. So, next time you are inclined to be make a tribality comment, question how different you truly are. For instance, if you look at the average child growing up in a large township in South Africa’s metropolis as per a study conducted by the University of Pretoria will learn speak between three and five languages. This is because they don’t see other tribes and languages they see an opportunity to learn something new and exciting and they have no biases and prejudices. So, tell me, what defines you as an African, our collective history or borders?
Music is also an important media, this why in places where they wish to sensor the people, music is always included in the suppression. The narratives we find in our music also affect what we know. From narratives of pain and heartbreak to stories of successes and triumphs. I once heard a song a song by the late great Hugh Masekela. He sang so fervently about, migration. In this son, he speaks about ‘the young and old African men who were conscripted to the gold mineral mines of Johannesburg
And its surrounding metropolis ‘. When you listen to this song you get a sense of the desperation that drove them to come to the mines, leaving poverty to work for their families. Little did they know that they were going to face horrible conditions and they might never get to see their families again. As millennials, generation Y, we have rarely seen such passion when it comes to our narratives and even the few of our stories which are told are drowned out by objectification, drugs and alcohol. Well women’s bodies to be honest…
SO…How much do you control when it comes to the media you absorb? What do you know about your people? How much of yourself do you see reflected in the different kinds of media. Find yourself, your history and an honest representation of who you are.

 February 24, 2018
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