Madi and I though we were going to US AID today but we were just out of the loop. We had our first political theory class. It was in the sand giant building as history class but it was on the 21 floor. Trey, Matt, Nik, Paul, and Dr Leedy took the stair up. Questionable. The professor for political theory was pretty dry and took long time to answer questions but it was still interesting. He went over the political climate since 1994. The ANC (African National Congress) vs the DA (Democratic Alliance) and all of the smaller influential parties like the freedom fighters, trade unions, Pan African congress, and the commmunjst party. I was surprised the communist party was still alive. The current state of affairs is Zuma or anti Zuma. He is the very corrupt current president. Everyone is joining together in anti Zuma. They had a multi denominational prayer night for South Africa that gathered over 1 million people to pray for peace in South Africa. It is right on the edge. If someone good came in as the leader, the country will regain the ground it lost but the bell could swing in the direction of chaos also. The ANC and Zuma stay in power because the ANC was mandelas party. The professor ended the class on a somber note that history repeats itself over and over if you don’t listen to the people.
After our in depth lecture on politics, a good gang (Trey, Paul, Matt, Nik,Austin, Eli, Ama, Madi and I) went to Tribeca on campus for lunch. It is like a mix of Panera and pdq so love. We want one on campus. We got our food to go and sat on the plaza grass. Madi and I split a pizza and had amazing smoothies. We discussed how America isn’t the best country. Things got a bit heated but the good amount. They boys eventually left but the girls and Austin and Matt stayed behind to soak in the sun for an extra 20 mins.
Playing on plaza. Photo by Eli http://www.elianafrench.com
We jumped on a bus and headed to downtown Pretoria. The downtown of Pretoria and Joburg are very black after a lot of people moved up suburbs. We were dropped off in front of the natural science museum and I was like why would we got to this museum in SA. Natural history is the same around the work. Dr Leedy felt the same so we made our way to the culture museum.
It looked like an old empty mall. They had a row of Victorian dressed, a large room filled with drums and African music things, a Greek mummy, a series of everyday objects, and old photos. The old photo exhibit was about how people were kicked out of their townships and forced to move anentire town because it was too close to a white settlement. There was another exbit of large posters that told the story of a protest and shooting.
The objects with stories exhibit looked like a mix of things we would find at goodwill, laminated worksheet print outs with graphics, and small two word descriptions. Lots of objects. Not too many written stories. The exhibit was called “Objects with Stories”. I thought it was hilarious because the name of the exhibit was so generic. Every object has a story. Every person has a story. It is just a jumble of things. Random things. There was also a giant painting that looked old and Dutch but upon further investigation, it was just a print of a famous painting. They had an exhibit on the bushmen and it threw me back to The Gods Must be Crazy Movie. It is a great movie and a Kiriazes classic.
This museum was so different from the nice museum/working space on the Justice hill. Museum space design is so interesting to me. The building didn’t have a story. I think all of the best museums have that cool museums building feel. It adds a lot to the experience. I doubt that too many ppl go to this museum. After giving us time to go through the museum, we all gathered in the children music room before heading out.
Walking through the streets of Johanasburg is an errie feeling. The streets weren’t bustling even though it is a tall and urban city. We were the only white people. A giant group of tourist white people. We walked through a main square with a Rhodes statue that was fenced off. There were a few homeless people in the square. We walked through a nice park by the federal buildings and it was back to people moving about. The park by the government buildings had a nice tree lined path and garden to the other side.
We gott the full museum experience at the natural history museum.