School of Social Sciences

Decolonising of the curriculum using Anthropology

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The Culture Cluster in the School of Social Sciences hosted an online workshop on Decolonising of the curriculum using Anthropology as a model, presented by Dr Nompumelelo Zodwa Radebe, a lecturer at the University of South Africa in the Department of Anthropology and Archaeology.

Radebe focused on teaching that draws from her culture, leading to exposure of a Zulu way of knowing. ‘I come from a culture that believes it takes a village to raise a child; in this sense, every child that is close to me is my child. A mother, in my culture, is tasked with the responsibility to teach because education is a basis for responsible and responsive citizens,’ she said. ‘In this context, education is not just a right that you can choose but mandatory. As such, teaching is not my profession and passion, but an obligation to ensure that our future has properly educated citizens who will be responsible and responsive.’

She noted that the decolonisation project is multifaceted and that decolonisation requires decolonised bodies, ‘It is matter of life and death. It is refusing to die, to participate in our erasure. It is an obligation to take the responsibility of teaching our children,’ argued Radebe.

Academic Leader for the Culture Cluster in the School Dr Maserole Kgari-Masondo said, ‘Decolonisation is key in curriculum transformation and it is important to keep workshopping ourselves so we ensure that our curricula are on par with what our society entails – different knowledge. We cannot continue focusing on one-sided knowledge (western); other epistemologies must be embraced in our teaching. We should continue to look at the practicalities of implementing decolonisation in our course outlines and how to teach it.’

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