DINNER PARTY INTEL...
The topics you have to be able to discuss this week
1. Mouthful of the year
The Pan SA Language Board, together with media-research firms Focal Points and Newsclip, has chosen “land expropriation without compensation” as SA’S word of the year, which it defines as “a word or term that was used most frequently in the country’s print, online and broadcast media”. Last year, “state capture” beat “white monopoly capital” and “blesser” to the title. The word of the year must be one that reflects the passing year.
“My heart goes out to those who were harmed by this ruthless enterprise” Venda king Toni Mphephu Ramabulana, offering to pay back ‘any amount shown to have been proceeds of illegalities’, after a Reserve Bank report said he had received a gratuitous payment of more than R17m from VBS Mutual Bank
2. Sauce for the gander
The UK Law Commission is deciding whether to broaden the ambit of hate crimes to include hostility to men and the elderly. Hate crimes are offences motivated by prejudice based on disability, race, religion, sexual orientation or transgender identity. It was earlier announced that the commission would look at whether offences driven by misogyny — contempt for women — should be treated as hate crimes. Now misandry, or hostility towards men, will also be considered. Hate crimes are considered as aggravated offences, which means they can attract longer prison sentences than similar crimes not motivated by hate.
3. Anyone can watch
One of the world’s most striking paintings, Rembrandt’s The Night Watch, is to be restored at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, reports The Guardian. The museum’s director, Taco Dibbits, said the public will be invited to watch the process, both from the gallery and via an internet livestream. It is believed to be the biggest undertaking of its kind and is expected to take several years and cost millions of euros. Completed in 1642 at the height of the Dutch Golden Age, The Night Watch was commissioned by the leader of the civic guard of Amsterdam. The painting, which measures
3.63m by 4.37m, was last restored in 1975, after a Dutch teacher slashed it with a bread knife.