RESEARCH

Prof Jesmael Mataga

Museums’ collections in Africa: A Book Project. Museums’ collections in Africa (Prof J Mataga).

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The publication invites contributions that review the history of collections of arts and cultures in national museums in Africa, and the policies designed to manage and preserve them. In short, the ambition is to bring to light the collections available in African museums, cutting across linguistic boundaries of Anglophone, Francophone and Lusophone Africa in order to give a large perspective of the subject. 

Chief Editor: Book Project: New Museology in Africa/ Museums in Southern Africa: Histories, Trajectories and new Practices. The book foregrounds recent (last decade) developments in the African Continent as regard the developments in museums. While acknowledging the tainted histories of the origins and practices of colonial museums in Africa, this editions seeks to foreground the emergent museographical  practices in postcolonial Africa. The initiative seeks to bring together a collective of well written empirically based studies across Southern and East Africa. Potential Publisher – Routledge or Common ground

 Re-Collecting the Missionary Road (J Mataga)- The project seeks to assemble an international, inter-disciplinary, and potentially post-colonial research project on Missionary Heritage in collaboration with academics and students from University of Cambridge and Sol Plaatje University as well as McGregor Museum. One collaborative Field school has already been held this year and more are planned pending availability of funding. 

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Dr G Benneyworth

Finalising a Research Report for the National Heritage Council that details my work on the black concentration camps undertaken during 2001-2008. This in turn will inform a book, under consideration, for 2020.

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Memorialisation of British and Australian soldiers graves at Driefontein battlefield Free State Province. R30,000 in donor funding was secured through fundraising in Australia. The project is in process for completion in 2019.

Developing an archeological survey of the original Scandinavian burial site at Magersfontein battlefield for 2019. This site I located during 2018.

Scoping the possibilities offered by Delville Wood National Heritage Site in the Somme District, France, to the Heritage Studies Programme.

Ongoing research into the commemorations around the SS Mendi which sank in 1917 during the First World War.

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Dr Lourenço Pinto

Research emanating from my doctorate

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Compare the substantial dataset, of recorded painted rock art motifs, obtained through my doctorate research, with similar sites and motifs in the Northern Cape. In particular, visit sites in the Northern Cape, Carnavon and Williston areas, 400- 500 KM, southwest of Kimberley. At least one publication would come from this research. One field trip to Kuruman undertaken in July, more to follow in 2019.

A new paradigm for rock art heritage management in Southern Africa: the cosmopolitan approach (COSMO-ART). COSMO-ART aims to develop and implement a cosmopolitan approach in rock art heritage management, with and for local actors. It aims to address the social issues of heritage, less well known in non-Western societies, and to develop a useful and fruitful approach to management rock art sites in a sustainable perspective. The methodological framework of the project was elaborated and tested since 2000 by several members of the research consortium in the Maloti-Drakensberg World Heritage Site (South Africa and Lesotho) and proved its robustness and relevance with 22 scientific publications focused or related to the research done in this area. Building on this accumulated expertise, the COSMO-ART project proposes to focus on key sites in two other areas: 1/ three major public sites (Wildebeest Kuil, Driekopseiland, Wonderwerk Cave) near Kimberley (Northern Cape, South Africa ; Morris, 2014), and 2/ the ≠Gaingu Conservancy (Erongo, Namibia ; Nivart et al. 2015, 2016).

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Dr Foreman Bandama

Research Projects

Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Anthropology

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I have been invited to write a 6000-8000 words article on Mining and Metallurgy in Africa for the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Anthropology (OREA). This an authoritative, scholarly and peer-reviewed online encyclopedia covering many areas of study that make up the field of anthropology. The project is led by Editor in Chief Mark Aldenderfer of the University of California, Merced and will be peer-reviewed by a distinguished global board of senior editors (http://anthropology.oxfordre.com/). My article will present synthetic overviews focusing on key questions and problems that have driven archaeometallurgical research on precolonial mining and metallurgy in Africa. This is an opportunity for me to add my voice on this topic because the articles will be an analytic review, rather than a space for advancing original field based research. This work will also be listed in major citation indexing services, aiding discoverability.

The metallurgy of Great Zimbabwe

Research at the World Heritage Site of Great Zimbabwe has traditionally emphasised the stone built component of the site. This, coupled with the dearth of craft based studies, left several technologies such as metallurgy unexplored. My ongoing research at the site traces the typology and technology of metals (gold, iron, bronze and brass) and associated infrastructure and debris (crucibles, tuyeres, slags, moulds, ingots and blooms) in order to examine innovation, interaction and trade at this Shona capital. I have already published two journal articles in high impact journals but another manuscript based on samples collected from ten previously unexplored areas of the site is in preparation (Metal working in the shadow of the walls: Archaeometallurgical analyses of surface collections from Great Zimbabwe’s metal industries).

Archaeology of drylands

Project explores of the archaeology of drylands that have traditionally been labelled as marginal because of aridity. The general conviction in the archaeology of southern Zambezia is that drylands are marginal landscapes that only hosted short-lived and insignificant food producing communities in the past. Our ongoing work in southwestern Zimbabwe reveals that drylands are resource rich and that communities which occupied these landscapes had the capacity to adapt and utilise these resources to their advantage. This challenges the designation of drylands as marginal, and we have a journal manuscript that has already been accepted for the December 2018 special Issues of Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa entitled “Are drylands marginal? Rethinking the Iron Age archaeology of southern Zambezia”. Going into the future, my plan is to expand the project into the Northern Cape, an area that is notorious for aridity that has dissuaded researchers from exploring research beyond the Late Stone Age. For the same reasons to do with semi-aridity, this area is perfect for exploring African responses to these environmental pressures. I have already accepted an invitation to carry out surveys in the Tswalu Game Reserve.

Precolonial copper and its alloys

This project explores the archaeometallurgy of flexible cuprous wound wires, widely believed to have been fashion accessories and traditionally consigned to appendices in archaeological site reports and other publications. While the chronology of copper is straightforward, and the inception of its alloys in southern Africa underpins technological innovation linked with the Eurasian trade via the Indian Ocean rim. I have a manuscript that has already been accepted for the December 2018 special Issues of Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa entitled “Copper wire objects from Jahunda and Little Mapela: Technology, value systems and networks in Iron Age southern Africa”.

 The rise of social complexity in southern Africa

This is a contested topic in which three regions (northern South Africa, northeastern Botswana and southern/southwestern Zimbabwe) have all laid claim to the genesis of first state systems. Chronology and material expressions have been at the centre of the debates and in August we published collaborative paper on “Elites and commoners at Great Zimbabwe: archaeological and ethnographic insights on social power” Antiquity 92: 1056–1075 (https://doi.org/10.15184/aqy.2018.137). Going forward, new work will be carried at the World Heritage Site of Khami in south western Zimbabwe.

Rooiberg metallurgy

This work stems from my PhD study in the Southern Waterberg. Several publications have already come out from this work but this current component focusing on finished iron metal is still outstanding. A paper is now under review for Volume 13/14 of Studies in the African Past (SAP) entitled Iron fabrication during the “age” of tin and bronze in the southern Waterberg of Limpopo Province.

Indigenous knowledge systems

This collaborative work with the University of Oslo explores ethnographic potting amongst Tsonga, Ndebele, Sotho and Venda communities in northern South Africa and southwestern Zimbabwe. A manuscript about the northern South Africa case study was already published and the one for the South Western Zimbabwean potters is under review. Our interest is on the transmission of potting knowledge following breaches in traditional orders such as the loss or change of technical space following relocations. In both cases, the majority of potting today occur in modern workshops in which the technical space is markedly different from the traditional private huts in which taboos could be easily observed and enforced, and learning is no longer vertical (from mother to daughter). 

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Dr Joseph Chikumbirikie

People plants interaction during the MSA and LSA at Wonderwerk Cave: A vegetational history and fuel wood selection at Wonderwerk.

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The study aims to establish vegetational history from MSA through to LSA at Wonderwerk. It is the aim of the study to determine if there were any environmental changes   and also establish the nature of human plant relationship at Wonderwerck.

Social, environment and subsistence economy of the prehistoric societies in Shangani region in Zimbabwe.

The study seeks to establish the prehistoric interaction, social organisation, technological, environment and subsistence practices of prehistoric agricultural communities in the Shangani region.

An ethnoarchaeobotanical study of the Kuruman cultural landscape.

The study focuses on documenting local resource exploitation practices and knowledge native to Kuruman cultural landscape by considering all the social and cultural dynamics involved in the use of these resources. All the three projects will culminate in peer reviewed publications.

In addition, I have been also been part of an International Scientific Research Team that has been working at Bushman Cave in Limpopo Province, South Africa. The scientific project, led by Guillaume Porraz (CNRS and IFAS Recherche) in close collaboration with Dr  Aurore Val (post-doc at the Evolutionary Studies Institute), is part of a long-term strategy of collaborative research and joint publications. The project aims to clarify the stratigraphy and getting new archaeological samples. The project is funded by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MAEDI) and supported by the University of Witwatersrand and the South African Heritage Resources Agency (SAHRA). I am involved in the project as an anthracologist.

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Dr Cobus Rademeyer

Background

Given the nature of my first degree (BA Ed with Human Movement Studies) as well as the scope of my PhD topic (The role of sports isolation as factor in the struggle for a new political dispensation for South Africa, 1980 – 1992) the majority of my research interest is still focused on different aspects of sports history. I have, however, lately also moved into an area of research that addresses a background to the current global refugee crisis (Eastern European diaspora into Africa).

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Research projects

Evaluating sport for people with disabilities on the African continent:

This project is divided into three segments: a) Provincial, b) National and c) continental. Provincially the research project links up to broader project in assisting the different school for children with disabilities, which in my case would be linked to sport for children with disabilities. It also expands into the history of sport for people with disabilities in the Northern Cape, and research which would assist in ensuring that the provincial structures provides the needed support for people with disabilities. Nationally, it links the Northern Cape with the rest of the country in researching potential provincial candidates for the “Green jacket awards”, focusing on people with disabilities in sport in our province. On continental level, the past successes and failures of African countries at the Paralympic Games will be investigated to ensure a better approach to the Games in future.

Partnerships

DHET (Department of Higher Education and Training

SRSA (Sport and Recreation South Africa)

SASAPD (South Africa Sport Association for the Physically Disabled)

School of Education, Syracuse University

The Olympic Studies Centre, IOC

Funding agency

Olympic Studies Centre, IOC (Currently on pre-grant funding, grant applications for 2019/20 opens in October 2018.

Eastern European diaspora into Africa:

Initially this project focused on the relatively unknown story of the Polish orphans in South Africa during and after the Second World War. This topic developed into a PhD topic for Stefan Szewczuk, while the original South Africa/Poland initiative grew into a much larger than expected project. Currently the project has expanded to include the following topics: Polish children of Oudtshoorn; Polish diaspora into Africa; Music and War (Comparative study between South Africa and Poland); The Warsaw Flights; and South African involvement in the initial investigation to the Katyn massacre.

During our research on the above mentioned topics, I have come to understand the parallels in the   background to the histories of Poland and Georgia. Apart from that, many historical links between Georgia and South Africa have also been identified – the involvement of Georgian soldiers in the South African War (1899-1902) as one example. This led to a meeting with the Georgian Ambassador in South Africa, and a subsequent visit to Georgia in January 2018. Based on my visit to Tbilisi State University two topics have been added to the research bundle: The involvement of Georgian soldier in the South African War; and Comparisons in transformation between South Africa as African example and Georgia as example in Europe. Discussions between the three core members of the research team (of which I am one) are planned with the Ukrainian and Lithuanian Embassies in December 2018 /January 2019 to include them in the project. The project envisages a student and academic staff exchange program in the near future, which will bring SPU History students in contact with History students and lecturers from various universities in Eastern Europe.   

Partnerships

University of Warsaw, Poland (MA student)

Tbilisi State University, Georgia (Potential PhD student)

Military University of Land Forces, Wroclaw, Poland

Polish Association of Siberian Deportees in South Africa

Kosciuszko Foundation, USA

Polish Embassy in South Africa

Georgian Embassy in South Africa

Funding agency

Polish Association of Siberian Deportees in South Africa

Polish Embassy in South Africa

Georgian Embassy in South Africa

The Northern Cape sporting heroes during the struggle:

Based on the awareness campaign in Kimberley on the South African sporting heroes during the struggle (2016 and 2018), a project has been initiated to create awareness about the sporting heroes of our province who did not previously get the recognition they deserve. The research project will culminate in permanent sports history exhibitions in all five districts of the Northern Cape Province, various publications and a series of coffee table books (of which the first one is already completed and needs to be revised and edited). The project will not only create awareness about sports history in the province but will also create awareness about history (visits to schools in the province), promote history as subject, promote the Northern Cape through the “Green Jacket” project and create various opportunities for post-graduate studies. Furthermore, History students will be involved in data collection, digitalisation of material and conservation of historical material. 

Partnerships

DSAC (Department of Sport Arts and Culture)

SRSA

UWC

Walter Sisulu University.

Funding agency

DSAC (Department of Sport Arts and Culture)

SRSA

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Dr Cornelis Muller

The Emily Hobouse Letters: South Africa in International Context, 1899-1926 project

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Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, this is a three-year collaborative research project that is piecing together the life and work of humanitarian reformer and pacifist Emily Hobhouse. The project team includes Dr Helen Dampier (Leeds Beckett University) and Dr Rebecca Gill (University of Huddersfield). The project focusses on Hobhouse’s epistolary networks and her practical contribution to projects for international peace, relief and reconstruction. The project will conclude in October 2019 with a travelling exhibition to be hosted both in the UK and in South Africa. For more information on the project, please visit https://emilyhobhouselettersproject.wordpress.com/

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Dr Crispen Chinguno:

Recent publications (selected):

Chinguno, C. (2018). The youth wage subsidy in South Africa: A controversial proposal to respond to mass youth unemployment (pp. 168-180). In Mayer, Tamar, Sujata Moorti, and Jamie K. McCallum, eds. The Crisis of Global Youth Unemployment. Routledge.

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Mabasa, K and Chinguno C (2018). Trade Unions organising in the mining sector: A structural perspective on worker insurgency and shifting union strategies. In Salimah Valiani (ed), The Future of Mining in South Africa: Sun set of sun rise? Jacana Media

Chinguno, C. (Eds) et al.). (2017). Rioting and Writing: Diaries of Wits Fallists. SWOP, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung and Ford Foundation.

Chinguno, C. (2015). The unmaking and remaking of industrial relations: the case of Impala Platinum and the 2012–2013 platinum strike wave. Review of African Political Economy, 42(146), 577-590.

Williams, G., Davies, S., & Chinguno, C. (2015). Subcontracting and labour standards: Reassessing the potential of international framework agreements. British Journal of Industrial Relations, 53(2), 181-203.

Chinguno, C. (2015). The platinum belt strike wave: Breakdown in the institutionalisation of industrial conflict. In Khadiagala, G. M., Naidoo, P., Pillay, D., & Southall, R. (2015). New South African Review 5 Beyond Marikana; Wits Press.

Chinguno, C. (2015). Strike violence in post-apartheid South Africa. TRAVAIL, capital et société, 48, 1-2.

Google citations

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Prof Victor Teise

Disciplinary research: Textual critical analyses of selected Afrikaans works

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Scholarship of teaching and learning: 1. Reading habits of Afrikaans speaking university students in the Northern Cape (baseline study as well as a full-scale project inclusive of schools)

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Dr Marga Stander

Current Research:

Following onto a previous project on translation as an interim intervention in paraphrasing and avoiding plagiarism, I am currently looking at the difference between manual translation and machine translation in comprehension of texts as an interim strategy with the aim of paraphrasing. 

Ms Carina Truyts

IDRC research grant for ‘Nourishing Spaces’ at the ACC (African Centre for Cities)

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Ms Truyts was part of a team that applied for and won a 1 million dollar IDRC research grant for a three-year project titled ‘Nourishing Spaces’ that investigates the link between Non-Communicable Disease (such as diabetes) and food systems in six African Cities: Nairobi and Kisumu in Kenya, Windhoek and Oshakati in Namibia, and Cape Town and Kimberley in South Africa. Under the Principal Investigator, Jane Battersby, Carina is leading the Kimberley research and has been responsible for training the interdisciplinary team in qualitative and ethnographic methods. She has trained and employed three students to assist with research, transcription and translation. The project runs for three years, and aims to create links between the broader, the university, and other stakeholders such as provincial health, as well as policy.

How ingestion edits life: Nourishment and Belonging in South Africa

Forthcoming book manuscript currently being edited after review. Carina has also published a photo essay on pedagogy and the Big Hole Counter Narrative Project in Anthropology Southern Africa, and written on sports, race and belonging in Acta Academica (in print).

TEKANO Fellowship: Ms Truyts was accepted to the Tekano Atlantic Fellowship programme for the 2017/2018 year. Tekano, derived from the Sesotho word for “equality”, aims at addressing health inequity in South Africa. The group meets every two months to collaborate, learn, and strategize on questions of inequity in South Africa. Lessons from this fellowship are being drawn into further research, as well as supervised third year research and advocacy projects on nourishment at SPU and in Kimberley.

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