College of Human Sciences

College of Human Sciences’ International Decoloniality Conference 6 - 8 August 2018

Senate Hall, Unisa Muckleneuk Campus, Pretoria, South Africa

Theo van Wijk Building

Unisa Muckleneuk Campus

Preller Street


South Africa

Registration fee: R1500 00 Student rate: R500 00
Event date:
06 - 08 August 2018
08:00:00 - 17:00:00

Theme: De-colonisation and Re-Afrikanisation: A conversation

Do you want to form part of a groundbreaking conference that seeks to find answers on what de-colonisation and re-Afrikanisation truly mean for South Africa and Africa?

If so, then the 2018 Unisa College of Human Sciences’ International Decoloniality Conference is for you. Join leading thinkers at the Conference which takes place from 6 to 8 August 2018.

Keynote speakers will include amongst others:

Walter D Mignolo: Argentine semiotician and professor at Duke University; Gcina Mhlophe, a well-known South African anti-apartheid activist, actress, storyteller, poet, playwright, director and author; Rantsho Moraka; Gogo Dineo Ndlazi; and the renowned Professor Pitika Ntuli

All interested stakeholders are invited to attend including community leaders and elders, opinion leaders, government officials, NGO workers, media representatives, artists and other creative performers in general and youth/students, among others. The aim of the conference is to take the conversation on de-colonisation and re-Afrikanisation forward, so all voices in all languages are welcome.

The topic explained:

This international conference seeks to bring to the fore the relationship between de-colonisation and re-Afrikanisation.

Defining Decolonisation: to make a deliberate and concerted effort to move away from colonial ways of knowledge imposed by colonisers that have meant that we have to turn away from Afrikan ways of knowing.

Defining Afrikanisation: to make a deliberate and concerted effort to embrace Afrikan phiolosophies of life and of being in relationship. These are found in our languages, our ways of expressing ourselves, how we relate to each other and how we understand life and, importantly, a good life to be.

This is a timely conversation given the crises our country and continent face which has largely been shaped by Western modernity. We have been criticising Western modernity. This proposed conference seeks to go beyond this and do something different which is to give life to Afrikan philosophies while it also explores where decolonization and re-Africanisation come together.

This is all done in service to a humanist agenda against the colonial agenda of death. In this way, in this humanist quest, we seek to center and go deep into decolonized knowledge as we stay true to the call to decolonise the university. By centering knowledges from Afrika, we buy space to breathe as we think from Afrika which we believe offers rich and deep philosophies that can give us tools of how to relate to other human beings, the animal and plant species and the spiritual world. It is important to re-think these relationships to undo the legacy of colonialism that damaged them.

What then are the philosophies and logics that inform Afrocentricity as opposed to Eurocentricity? Are these clear-cut and diametrically-opposed? What are some of the tools of life found in our languages that can help us to bring to life Afrikan philosophies?

What about our spiritual beliefs that can help us forge better relations with each other? What does Ubuntu/botho mean to you? How can it be translated to how we understand civilization? Does Ubuntu/botho give us direction on issues of justice? Can Ubuntu tell us anything about the question of Land? Do the arts reflect and embody Ubuntu/botho? If not, how can they begin to do so?

Who are the seers to whom we can turn in the quest to excavate Afrikan truths, Afrikan approaches to life? What can we learn from Credo Mutwa? Are there lessons to learn from a decolonial reading/interpretation of uNongqawuse? What do particular contexts teach us as we put de-colonisation in conversation with Afrikanisation? What life springs, informed by Ubuntu/botho, are there in social organization that put humanity at the center?  Where do we go and how do we get there beyond the stagnation of the social, political and economic discourse post 1994?

Presentations will address some of the following topics in relation to de-colonisation and re-Afrikanisation, among others:

  • Credo Mutwa: isanusi and seer
  • UNongqawuse, time, voice, and language
  • Civilisation and barbarism: a decolonial viewpoint
  • Egyptology and Afrika
  • Knowledge, over-standing and consciousness
  • Voodoo and sorcery: transcendence
  • Being, personhood and belonging: thinking beyond colonial concepts of race, gender and age
  • Wellbeing
  • Ethics of ubuntu/ubuntu as an ethic
  • Justice above law: when law subverts the attainment of justice
  • Memory and loss/loss and memory: re-membering Afrika
  • Consciousness and materiality: the land question
  • Spirituality, worship and theosophy
  • The arts and aesthetic expression
  • Haiti: lessons for re-Afrikanisation and de-colonisation

For those who are interested, please find all the information in this attached registration form.

Registration fee: R1500 00

Student rate: R500 00