Trafficking Politics in Cultural Guise: South Africa’s Coverage of Millennium 2000

JVF Conference Papers

The theme of this paper is relations between globalization and local media in South African national politics.

Any assumption of a homogenous national culture is a myth; “ex-centrics,” marginal cultures exist as sites of hegemonic contestation. However, certain political agendas in national politics remain dominant and pervasive. My aim is to contextualize the resulting interaction between marginal cultures and dominant political agendas, and to show that “global culture” (in a broad sense that also evokes Americanism) is not always an imperial ploy but also a terrain of cultural exchange, resistance, and export.

Taking the Global New Year 1999/2000 television event as an example, I will show that a global context can be effectively utilized to enhance national political objectives, not only to further global ends but also to reaffirm national political aims.

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