South Africa’s topless protesters are fighting shame on their own terms

On a cold and wet morning, a large group of protesters – many of them bare- breasted – gathered to protest on the Rhodes university campus in Grahamstown, South Africa.

Clad in jeans and head-wraps, some had written “Enough!” across their chests. They marched defiantly, having just published a controversial list naming alleged campus rapists in order to highlight their concerns that the university was too slow in addressing the complaints of survivors.

A few days later, a solidarity protest took place at the University of the Witswatersrand in Johannesburg. Many wore purple – the colour that has become the global symbol of women’s resistance to sexism.

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