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Ask Gayleen 4 — Race Relations in South Africa: Reality and Realism













Interviewer: Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Interviewees: Gayleen Cornelius

Numbering: Issue 3: Mathematics, Counselling Psychology, and More

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: Question Time

Web Domain:

Individual Publication Date: July 18, 2019

Issue Publication Date: January 1, 2019

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 626

Keywords: Gayleen Cornelius, race, race relations, Scott Douglas Jacobsen.

Gayleen Cornelius is a South African human rights activist from Willowmore; a tiny town in the Eastern Cape province. She grew up a coloured (the most ethnically diverse group in the world with Dutch, Khoisan, Griqua, Zulu, Xhosa Indian and East Asian ancestry). Despite being a large Demographic from Cape Town to Durban along the coast, the group is usually left out of the racial politics that plague the nation. She has spoken out against identity politics, racism, workplace harassment, religious bigotry and different forms of abuse. She is also passionate about emotional health and identifies as an empath/ humanist. Here we talk about race, race relations, and South Africa, and more.

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: As we both know, the term ‘race’ simply comes from pseudoscientific categories from a bygone era, of which people continue to suffer, whether under delusions about its reality or the effects following from notions of superiority and inferiority of races, i.e., a purported racial hierarchy. As biologists tell us, ad nauseam, surface physiological appearances deceive us; we’re one species or a single human species with the most minor of surface differences. Even with that said, we come to a difficult realization: the real impacts of a false belief on people’s lives for decades and centuries.

Gayleen Cornelius: Race relations in South Africa are filled with tension especially now due to the rise of social media. There is a viral video or picture documenting racial discrimination or racial insults almost every month fuelling public outrage and uncovering the hate between different races as never seen before.

Jacobsen: What is the state of race relations in South Africa? Would scientific training help move things into a more progressive state than currently or ever before?

Cornelius: Scientific training could be helpful if people were willing to learn. The average South African however relates more to his or her experience better than what any rationalist is going to teach them. A strategic program of reconciliation, reparations and national healing would be a lot more effective given the racist nightmare our country has lived through.

Jacobsen: Even as we live with this horror of history, what seems like some glimmers of hope as to progressive change in South Africa in terms of race relations?

Cornelius: The younger generation coming up is a lot more progressive than the previous one that lived through Apartheid. Young South Africans have healthier views about race and they understand the conflict from a neutral perspective. There might be hope for the future as the Apartheid generation slowly gets replaced.

Jacobsen: Thank you for the opportunity and your time, Gayleen.

Scott Douglas Jacobsen founded In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal and In-Sight Publishing. He authored/co-authored some e-books, free or low-cost. If you want to contact Scott:

Image Credit: Gayleen Cornelius.

License and Copyright


In-Sight Publishing and Question Time by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
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© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and Question Time 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and Question Time with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.  All interviewees co-copyright their interview material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

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