Erna Smith and grad student report from South Africa

Journalism professor Erna Smith, with the help of graduate student Christine Detz (Broadcast Journalism), wrote an article about LGBT rights for citizens in South Africa that appeared in the Global Post and Huffington Post on Oct. 5.

The story was reported while Detz and her classmates were in Cape Town last summer for an internship program arranged through USC Annenberg's International Programs office. In the article, Smith wrote about the practice of "corrective rape" in South Africa, explaining that it is common for straight men to rape lesbians to "correct" their sexual orientation. "South Africa is at once one of the best places in the world — and one of the worst — to be gay," she wrote. "It offers comprehensive official rights rooted in the struggle to overthrow apartheid, with one of the most progressive constitutions in the world. But the ongoing threat of 'corrective rape,' part of a pervasive and well-documented pattern of sexual violence against women and children, demonstrates that the reality on the ground conflicts with that progressive ideology."

Recent alumnus Kevin Grant, a member of the 2010 Cape Town class and current deputy editor for international news at, asked Smith to report the story package.

"Working with Christine and Kevin was a wonderful experience and I think the caliber of their work and understanding of the issues demonstrates the enormous value of our international summer internship programs," Smith said in an email announcing the story package.

Read the Global Post article.

Read the Huffington Post article.