Energy Archives: Of Rocks, Rubbish, and Feminist Feeling in Aliki Saragas’s Strike a Rock

Citation:

Strauss, Helene. 2020. “Energy Archives: Of Rocks, Rubbish, and Feminist Feeling in Aliki Saragas’s Strike a Rock.” Subjectivity 13 (4): 254–80. 

Author: Helene Strauss

Abstract:

Taking the film Strike a Rock (dir. Saragas 2017) as a case study, this paper attends to the affective charge of rocks and rubbish—in their material, symbolic, aesthetic and archival forms—as a feminist challenge to violent extractivism’s intergenerational echo. Set in Nkaneng, a township adjacent to the Lonmin Platinum mine in Marikana, where in 2012 the South African police opened fire on a group of striking miners, the film traces some of the means by which local women have been negotiating enduring forms of political and economic impasse in their communities. This paper tests an anthrodecentric approach to extractive capitalism’s historical exploitation of mineral, mechanical, muscular and psychic energies as a means to accelerating resistance to forms of violence at once human and ecological. It identifies in Strike a Rock’s documentary aesthetics an energy archive that animates resistant, regenerative political modalities of post-apartheid feminist affect.

Keywords: capitalism, extractives, resistance

Topics: Extractive Industries, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Infrastructure, Energy Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2020

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