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I have suffered backlash from white people (and black people) - Kasi Mlungu

15 February 2017 12:00 PM

Anita Ronge, famously known as Kasi Mlungu, talks music career, race and township lifestyle with Eusebius McKaiser.

South African house music DJ, Anita Ronge, famously known as Kasi Mlungu, has been in the spotlight for calling herself Kasi Mlungu (white township person) and adapting black township lifestyle.

Ronge has been accused of cultural appropriation.

Ronge says she does not understand why people criticise her for embracing African culture when others embrace Western culture all the time.

She says she receives hundreds of messages from people giving her positive comments about her lifestyle choice.

She says she doesn't understand why people should be identified by their race.

I just see people as people.

Anita Ronge, South African house music DJ

I have suffered the backlash from white people because of the life I have chosen to live.

Anita Ronge, South African house music DJ

I don't feel like I'm getting the privilege for being any skin colour.

Anita Ronge, South African house music DJ

I have worked myself to death to get to the point where I am in my DJ career. It's not because of anything but hard work. Everyone in the entertainment industry knows that. You need to put in the work for you to get the result.

Anita Ronge, South African house music DJ

Ronge's stage name is The DuchAz.

She says she was named Kasi Mlungu by his colleagues three years ago.

The funny thing is that I didn't give myself with that name. It was given to me.

Anita Ronge, South African house music DJ

Why should we be defined by the colour of our skin. It's such a stupid thing.

Anita Ronge, South African house music DJ

Professor of Media Studies at UCT Adam Haupt questioned her unowned privilege. He argues that while the sentiment of immersing herself in traditional black spaces and embracing other cultures is commendable, it raises concerns.

He questions her position of privilege which allows her success in her field that many black artists are unable to access.

Haupt argues that if a white person earns a good living in this way, they need to 'check their privilege', and have a heightened consciousness around the context they find themselves in - and find ways to give back.

Listen to full interview with Anita - and Prof Adam Haupt below explaining cultural appropriation...


15 February 2017 12:00 PM