In a surveillance and regulation of protest movements in a democratic liberal society: exploring the lives of Fees Must Fall activists at Stellenbosch University.

Phillips, Ashwin Lorenzo (2021-12)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2021.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The year 2015 marked the beginning of the Fees Must Fall movements in South Africa, this thesis explores the lives of student activists at Stellenbosch University, through the lens of surveillance and regulation. This research has extended for the entire duration of the Fees Must Fall campaign at Stellenbosch University, encompassing interviews, data analysis and participation observation. The core of this thesis looks at the surveillance and regulation of students, by overlaying the idea of the panopticon from theorists Michele Foucault and George Orwell, over the lives of the student activists. Through the lenses of surveillance this thesis explores issues beyond mere surveillance and regulations but encapsulate multiple issues which surfaced during the protests. It looks beyond how students were watched, but looks at the treatment of students, how they were impacted, affected, and retaliated against this surveillance. Through the lens of surveillance, I looked at how the student activist groups were not just watched but what impact it had on the group and individuals, causing social paranoia and a breakdown in the groups trust. Moreover, it looks at how power has taken many forms throughout the campaign, but also how complex power relations are between the two groups. The thesis also shows how through these complex power relations that power can shift and how the activists at Stellenbosch University used sousveillance to shift the power relations but also hold the university accountable for their own actions, using social media campaigns and hashtags. I explored how surveillance and sousveillance played a role in shaping a new age in protesting and how narratives are shaped through this new age of protests . Furthermore, it delves into the countries deep racial history and compare the continuities of lives of apartheid activists and Fess Must Fall activist, and how the idea of the swart gevaar still exists at a place like Stellenbosch University. By understanding the tensions with regards to the way the university produces an image of an ideal student and how when this is translated into reality, racial tensions arise. This thesis looks at vast topics around surveillance but also transformation, as surveillance has become a part of the issue of transformation. This thesis was written in a post Fees Must Fall society but speaks to the continuity of the failure of higher education.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die jaar 2015 was die begin van die Fees Must Fall-bewegings in Suid-Afrika. Hierdie proefskrif ondersoek die lewens van studente-aktiviste aan die Universiteit Stellenbosch deur middel van toesig en regulering. Hierdie navorsing het vir die hele duur van die Fees Must Fall- veldtog aan die Universiteit Stellenbosch uitgebrei, wat onderhoude, data-analise en waarneming van deelname insluit. Die kern van hierdie proefskrif kyk na die toesig en regulering van studente, deur die idee van die panoptikon van die teoretici Michele Foucault en George Orwell oor die lewens van die studenteaktiviste te bedek. Deur middel van die lense van toesig ondersoek hierdie proefskrif kwessies buite bloot toesig en regulasies, maar omvat verskeie kwessies wat tydens die betogings opgeduik het. Dit kyk verder as hoe studente gekyk is, maar kyk na die behandeling van studente, hoe hulle geraak is, geraak en weerwraak geneem is op hierdie toesig. Deur die lens van toesig het ek gekyk hoe daar nie net gekyk word na die studente-aktivistegroepe nie, maar watter impak dit op die groep en individue gehad het, wat sosiale paranoia en 'n uiteensetting van die groepsvertroue veroorsaak. Daarbenewens word gekyk hoe mag deur die hele veldtog baie vorme aangeneem het, maar ook hoe ingewikkeld magsverhoudings tussen die twee groepe is. Die tesis toon ook aan hoe deur hierdie komplekse magsverhoudinge die mag kan verskuif en hoe die aktiviste aan die Universiteit Stellenbosch sousveillance gebruik het om die magsverhoudinge te verskuif, maar ook die universiteit verantwoordelik hou vir hul eie optrede deur middel van sosiale media-veldtogte en hashtags. Ek het ondersoek ingestel hoe toesig en sousveillance 'n rol gespeel het in die vorming van 'n nuwe era in protesaksies en hoe narratiewe gevorm word deur hierdie nuwe era van protes. Verder verdiep dit die diep rasse-geskiedenis in die lande en vergelyk dit die lewenskontinuïteite van apartheidsaktiviste en Fess Must Fall-aktivis, en hoe die idee van die swart gevaar steeds bestaan op 'n plek soos die Universiteit Stellenbosch. Deur die spanning te verstaan ten opsigte van die manier waarop die universiteit 'n beeld van 'n ideale student voortbring, en hoe dit in die werklikheid vertaal word, ontstaan daar rassespanning. Hierdie proefskrif kyk na groot onderwerpe rondom waarneming, maar ook transformasie, aangesien toesig 'n deel van die kwessie van transformasie geword het. Hierdie proefskrif is geskryf in 'n berig Fees Must Fall-samelewing, maar spreek van die kontinuïteit van die mislukking van hoër onderwys.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/123593
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