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20 Powerful Images From South Africa's Student Protests in Cape Town

South Africa’s #FeesMustFall2016 protests through the lens of a first-year student at the University of Cape Town.

Students at universities throughout South Africa are protesting for the second year in a row over rising tuition fees and institutionalised colonialism. Last October, a proposed 10.5 fee increase sparked the nationwide #FeesMustFall movement, which culminated in President Jacob Zuma announcing there would be no fee increases for the 2016 academic year. What would happen to fees in the 2017 academic year was still anyone’s guess.


On Monday, just over 11 months since the initial onset of #FeesMustFall, South Africa’s Higher Education Minister, Blade Nzimande, set off a wave of shutdowns when he announced it will be up to the individual universities to decide if they’ll raise fees for the upcoming academic year, with a suggested cap of eight percent.

The announcement came with immediate pushback from student leaders at the universities of Witwatersrand, Pretoria, Cape Town and various other institutions throughout South Africa, where students have been protesting and going head-to-head with South African police all week.

In Cape Town, a new wave of demonstrations have been building for days. In the photo story below, we see the September 2016 protests at UCT through the lens of a first-year student by the name of Raz. The images begin on the 12th of September, when Robertson Winery workers, protesting for increased wages, joined students on campus. They pick up inside Jameson Hall this past Monday, the day of Nzimande’s #Fees2017 announcement, where we see students gather for a lecture on decolonisation by UCT Politics Professor Lwazi Lushaba. They culminate on Tuesday, the first day of the shutdown.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Raz.

Photo by Meztli Yoalli Rodríguez

Dying Lagoons Reveal Mexico’s Environmental Racism

In the heart of a traditionally Black and Indigenous use area in Southwest Mexico, decades of environmental destruction now threatens the existence of these communities.

On an early morning in September 2017, in a little fishing village in the Pacific coast of Oaxaca, called Zapotalito, thousands of dead fish floated on the surface of the Chacahua-Pastoría lagoons. A 7.1-magnitude earthquake, which rattled Mexico City on September 19, was felt as far down as Zapotalito, and the very next morning, its Black, Indigenous and poor Mestizo residents, who depend on the area's handful of lagoons for food and commerce, woke up to an awful smell and that terrible scene of floating fish.

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