n South African Journal of Higher Education - Renovating the Humanities for South Africa

Volume 19, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



This article argues that to rehabilitate humanities research in South Africa by setting out to coordinate a substantive research agenda for these disciplines, as the NRF is currently attempting to do, is hardly an adequate response to the predicament in which the humanities find themselves. Instead, the article argues for a more radical re-think of the humanities throughout the education system, paying particular attention to post-graduate training, the character of research work encouraged, and the orientation of the disciplines in South Africa in relation to the imperial ambitions of the western academy. Substantial recommendations for the renovation of many aspects of humanities education are put forward, concluding that a rigorous process of strategic reassessment and reorientation is essential. Specific comments on research in the Fine Arts and Education are included.

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