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Will Cliff 10/7/09 WAC 1 ELECTIONS AND ERECTIONS OUTLINE Write a 4-6 page paper in relation to the performance and book that answers the question: What strategies does Pieter-Dirk Uys employ to intervene in South African politics? Are these strategies effective? Could they be used elsewhere—eg in the United States—as effectively? INTRO: Some people consider the expression “ you can do anything as long a you try ” to be cliché—but South African artist Pieter-Dirk Uys confirms its validity. Single handedly, Uys acted as a catalyst in getting rid of the Apartheid regime in South Africa. Today, he is aggressively attacking the AIDS epidemic. What makes Uys special are his entirely unconventional methods he uses to make a difference. THESIS: Pieter-Dirk Uys effectively uses his unique skills as an actor, satirist, moderator, and a humanitarian to play a heroic role in directly bringing issues of racism, AIDS, and poor human relations to the attention of the people of South Africa and the rest of the world. BODY: Through the creation of fictitious characters, Uys set the stage for the South African people to recognize its weaknesses in its Apartheid government. He created many characters—a family of them one might call it. Uys most famous character creation was Evita Bezuidenhout—a pure blood Afrikaner woman who loves her country. With brilliant shows and great publicity that shed light on the truth of politically what was going under Apartheid, Uys and his character of Evita gathered a following from the entirety of the nation. Uys writes, “Evita made us laugh. She reminded us that a future without democracy was impossible, and prepared for the worst trying to make friends with blacks and attempting to pronounce the names of her kitchen maids and gardeners… PW Botha became more bizarre by the day and my impersonation of him became more like a Muppet on speed (p. 37).” Using Evita and other imitations, Uys was able to divert power away from Apartheid leaders like PW Botha, and into the hands of people and democracy.
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