While higher education (HE) institutions in South Africa have become demographically ever more diverse, transcultural contact among students and staff members has seemingly failed to mend race-based prejudices and structural inequality.
By acknowledging the embeddedness of symbolic violence in physical space and lived experience, this article proposes an experimental and embodied approach to critically engage with ongoing structural and symbolic prejudice. The argument is made that the physical landscape of HE institutions, as well as the lived experience of marginalised students and staff members, must be seen as the first port of call if transformation is to occur.
The article argues that visual redress in the form of removing, contextualising, or adding new visual symbols is not sufficient to address the complexities of the issues involved. Embodied learning experiences using visual arts and performance processes could be included to enhance redress. The article therefore draws on the writings and thought of Nancy Fraser, Henri Lefebvre, Achille Mbembe, and various others in an attempt to sketch a theoretical framework to think through the need for and possibilities of visual, invisible, subtle, and relational redress.