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Interrogating the normative tradition of Ukukhuzela (court praises) in the age of rape culture in a cosmopolitan society: insights from Zulu students from the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

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Social and cultural norms are guidelines or expectations for behaviour and thought that are based on common beliefs within a social or cultural group. What is (and is not) appropriate in interpersonal relationships is governed by norms, which are frequently unstated rules for acceptable and undesirable behaviour. Within societal groups, these normative practices can then translate into a cultural normative construct that becomes exercised. The Zulu cultural normative practice of ukukhuzela is put in question here. The author interrogates its existence in today‟s cosmopolitan communities through in-depth interviews and focused group discussion with university students of Zulu extraction at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. The participants included male and female students. Secondary sources of data in the form of published literature, including research monographs and journal articles, were consulted to meet the study's aims. Findings suggest that ukukhuzela has been discrepantly identified and associated with the social normative practice of rape culture antics due to insufficient knowledge of its practice. Narratives of ukukhuzela vary, as some identify it as a violation of their space, noting that it has notions of hyper-sexualising attention. With other participants seeing it for its true purpose, which is the admiration and endearment of women. The study noted that times have changed, modernity has challenged the dominance of tradition, and there is a need for concerted and deliberate efforts to create an atmosphere of social cohesion through mass and cultural education


Research Articles. Criminology and Forensic Studies.



Majola, K.B., Mkhize, S.M. and Akpan, U.J., 2023. Interrogating the Normative Tradition of Ukukhuzela (court praises) in the Age of Rape Culture in a Cosmopolitan Society: Insights from Zulu Students from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. African Journal of Gender, Society & Development, 12(3).