To live in South Africa can at times feel like living underneath a heavy and ominous cloud. Even on the brightest days the eerie thought of living in a country with one of the world’s highest crimes rates, unemployment and income inequality comes creeping into the back of your mind and grey’s the skies momentarily. Considering all this, do you blame us for wanting to escape? For wanting to have spaces, music, entertainment and ideas that help us feel that we can get away from it all, or even make it feel like it doesn’t exist?. Can you blame us for wanting to feel like everything will be okay?.
Since 2019 the Amapiano genre has taken South Africa by storm and has given a voice and outlet to many South African youth. It became a new pride of the nation, most known for the hypnotic pounding of the log drum, the clever and catchy wordplay from pioneer’s such as the late Killa Kau, and the undeniable uplifting euphoria it can create. But what message do we mostly hear and see from the genre? Does it say this is where we are or does it say this is where you want to be? Or maybe a bit of both perhaps?.
Though it is great to have an escape, eventually the question has to be asked how much escaping is too much? Have we become addicted to the illusion of escape as a nation? If so, at what cost?. In this week’s episode of Maintain The Design we touch on escapism culture in South Africa and try to unpack what lengths we’ll go to
as a nation to evade the cloud.