Dear Colleagues and Members of the Public

You are cordially invited to attend the UJ Sociology, Anthropology & Development Studies Wednesday Seminar. The weekly seminar has been hosted by the Department of Sociology since 2000. It is supported by the UJ Faculty of Humanities and the UJ Department of Anthropology & Development Studies. Meetings are held on UJ's Auckland Park Kingsway campus, at 15h30 on every Wednesday afternoon during term time, unless otherwise indicated.

Prospective presenters are encouraged to contact Dr Tapiwa Chagonda at

Please find the current programme below. Those who wish to be added to the mailing list are welcome to send a request to

Guests are asked to arrive at the venue by 15:25. Those coming from outside the UJ are advised to enter the campus through Gate 2 on the corner of Ditton and Ripley Streets and to park in Car Park B (scroll down for map). It may be helpful to show an invitation to the guard on duty.  

The venue for the seminars are usually D-Ring 506, in the Department of Anthropology and Development Studies, unless differently indicated.

Best wishes
The Convenors: Wednesday Seminar 

Term 1: Contours of sex and sexualities

7 February: Prof. Jonathan Stadler (Department of Anthropology and Development Studies, UJ) on '(Re-) Discovering Sexuality in a Clinical Trial.' Discussant: Dr. Femke Brandt (Department of Anthropology and Development, UJ).

14 February: Helen Gebregiorgis (Independent Consultant, Africa Photo Stories) on 'Lagos Budding 50 - Storytelling project on Migration and Resilience.'

21 February: Marlene de Beer (Department of Social Work, UJ) with inputs by, Fayzal Mahamedon (the father) on 'Male Disability Sexual Assistance Through Masturbation: South African Case Study of Father Masturbating his Severe Disabled Son - Ethical, Legal, Assessment and Intervention Considerations and Options.' Discussant: TBC

28 February:  Andile Mayekiso (Department of Anthropology and Development Studies, UJ) on 'Ndiyindoda! (I am man!): The Significance of Pain in Xhosa Male Circumcision and Implications ofukutesta (to test).' Discussant:  TBC

7 March: Prof Dennis Francis (Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology, Stellenbosch University) on 'Troubling Compulsory Heterosexuality in South African Education.'

14 March: Dr. Peace Kiguwu (Department of Psychology, University of the Witwatersrand) on 'Reading non-heteronormative Bodies: (re)engaging theoretical impasse'. Discussant: Mr. Anele Siswana (Department of Psychology, UJ). 

Term 2: New South African Labour Politics

11 April. Dr. Carin Runciman (Senior Researcher at the Centre for Social Change, UJ) on "Why Labour Gave up the Right to Strike". Discussant: Prof. Eddie Webster, (Wits)

20 April. Prof. Malehoko Tshoaedi, (UJ) and Prof. Andries Bezuidenhout, (University of Fort Hare). Book Launch: Labour Beyond COSATU: Mapping the Rupture in South Africa's Labour Landscape (Wits University Press). Discussant: Dr. Trevor Ngwane, (Senior Researcher at the Centre for Social Change, UJ).

25 April. Ms. Ramona Baijnath, (M.A. student at UJ) on "Writing her in: An Exploratory Study into the Life Herstory Narratives of Women Participants in the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP), Infrastructure Sector Project at Leratong Hospital in Krugersdorp, South Africa Utilising an African Feminist Perspective". Discussant: Dr. Kezia Batisai, (UJ).

2 May. Prof. David Dickinson, (Wits) on "Above and Below the Lex: Insurgent Unionism and Technologies of Struggle. Industrial Conflict in the South African Post Office 2011 – 2014". Discussant: Dr. Carin Runciman, (Senior Researcher at the Centre for Social Change, UJ).

9 May. Sonwabile Mnwana on "Mining, Property Struggles, and Shifting Meanings of Land on the Platinum Belt, South Africa". Discussant TBC.

16 May 2018. Term end film: Racism in Sport: Forever Pure (2016). 


​​​Background and archive

The UJ Sociology, Anthropology & Development Studies Wednesday Seminar is hosted by the UJ Department of Sociology, which has hosted a seminar sinc​e 1995, began meeting more regularly in 1999 and successfully launched the weekly seminar in 2000. By means of this seminar, the Department of Sociology has contributed vibrant and transformative intellectual debate linking both established and upcoming UJ human and social scientists with activists, trade unionists, scholars from other institutions, and members of the media. Alongside regular participation from within our own ranks, guests hosted by the department over the years include Proff Thabo Fako,Shula Marks and John Saul (2000), Proff William Beinart, Michael Burawoy, Dunbar Moodie and Rusty and Hilda Bernstein (2001), Proff Denis Brutus and Joanne Duffy (2002), Prof Iris Marion Young, Sasha Gear and Trevor Ngwane (2003), Proff Giovanni Arrighi, Fred Hendricks, Jonathan Jansen, and Gay Seidman (2004), Proff Simon Bekker, Bert Klandermans, Tom Lodgeand Elinor Sisulu (2005), Dr Loraine Nencel and Proff John Higgins, Partha Mukherji, and Immanuel Wallerstein (2006), Proff Susan Parnell, Liz Stanley, Thomas Blom Hansen and Rehad Desai (2007) and Proff Jo Beall, Min-Chang Tsai and Michael Burawoy (2008).

From 2001 to 2006, the department promoted its in-house Centre for Sociological Research (CSR) as a co-host of the seminar. The seminar has enjoyed financial support from the UJ Faculty of Humanities and a venue and general support from the Department of Anthropology & Development Studies. The UJ Department of Sociology continues to an​chor the Wednesday Seminar, the longest running and most regular of the University of Johannesburg's public lectures and seminars.