Read the rest of Neville Alexander's article here.Most South Africans will continue for a very long time to see themselves, and see one another, as “Africans”, “Indians”, “Coloureds” and “Whites”, simply because these identities were constructed in terms of ruling class agendas and interests over decades and centuries.
These people have a right to see themselves as such but, given the history of racial conflict and inequality, it is the duty of those who have the power to do so to create conditions in which the need to identify in this way becomes unnecessary and undesirable.
While there are many things we can do in the short to medium term to create a more tolerant and tolerable social climate, it will take generations of consistent and patient work to alter the underlying structures that cause and entrench racial prejudice and all the awful expressions of hatred and ignorance that inevitably go with racial stereotyping.
His insistence on pressing past race is not a denialist argument of the non-racial kind that Mandela and company postulate and it is definitely not the liberal race pandering nonsense that Jonathan Jansen sells to weary whites and others.
I have spent a lot of time thinking about whether we can survive race. It is an unfinished task and one that is greater than me.
What would our world look like when race is not used in any context? Will its class contents -as Marxists point out- still be the main point(s) of oppression?
Alexander pushes us to think beyond race. It is a relevant push and one that will have to provide alternatives if it is not going to end up being just another wish for a better way.
To get there we will need a real revolution in thinking and in living.
Is it possible? Can we solve race?