SlutWalks don't work in South Africa, says Johannesburg blogger

September 22, 2011

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(AP/Schalk van Zuydam)
Women and men march the streets of Cape Town, South Africa as part of a SlutWalk.

Earlier this year, a police officer went on a routine visit to York University in Toronto to advise young women on safety. His tip? Women should avoid dressing like sluts to avoid sexual assault.

His comments sparked a global protest movement called "SlutWalk." From Canada to the U.S. to India and, now, South Africa, women take to the streets, sometimes in their bras and underwear, to protest prevalent attitudes that blame victims of sexual assault, not the perpetrators.

Writer Zama Ndlovu felt uneasy when the SlutWalk campaign rolled into her native South Africa. She wrote a column in the Christian Science Monitor arguing that SlutWalks are culturally insensitive and “not the right tool” to solve the problem of widespread sexual violence. A new study by South Africa's Medical Research Council says that one in four South African men admit to having raped a woman at least once. Zama tells us why she won't participate in SlutWalk Johannesburg.