Launch of the Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Commemorative Seminar Series


On Tuesday, 27th February 2018 the University of Fort Hare (UFH) Centre for Transdisciplinary Studies African Intellectual Resistance & Liberation Heritage Project, in partnership with Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Trust (RMST) and the African Institute for Knowledge and Sustainability (AIKS), will host the Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Seminar Series under the theme: “Sobukwe’s Quest for an African University: Representations and Misrepresentations of a Man of Vision in Post-Apartheid South Africa”.

The Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Seminar Series is a comprehensive collaborative programme forming a part of the commemorative activities to mark the 40th anniversary of Sobukwe’s untimely passing, and will continue for the whole year, culminating in a Pan-African Conference in February 2019. The first seminar will be delivered by Dr. Luvuyo Dondolo, Director of the centre for Transdisciplinary Studies at the University of Fort Hare, with Dr. Neo Lekgotla laga Ramoupi of the Wits School of Education as the respondent.

By way of brief background, it continues to be a source of grave concern that Robert Sobukwe’s legacy and intellectual tradition continues to be marginalized in the contemporary South African academic and political spaces; Sobukwe continues to be a muted philosophical voice whose socio-political content and intellectual depth are yet to be explored. It is for this reason that RMST was established in 2008 with the vision of becoming the chief advocate and promoter of the values, ideals and intellectual tradition Robert Sobukwe sacrificed his for: the liberation of humanity.

Moreover, the recent calls for a decolonized education curricular by the #FeesMustfall student movement resonate precisely with Sobukwe’s articulation of a vision of an African University that would serve as the barometer of African intellectual thought, championing innovation, progress and development of the continent. The students’ resonance with Sobukwe’s liberatory ideas – expressed through their veneration of him in song, poetry, graffiti and tshirts – renegotiated Sobukwe’s place and relevance in post-apartheid South Africa.

As we grapple with questions of what it means to decolonize educational institutions – structures and content – a focus on the intellectual thoughts and philosophical contributions of Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe, 40 years after his passing, is not only imperative, but critical. Through this Robert Sobukwe Seminar Series we hope to unpack the current trajectory of African liberation post-independence; where we currently are in the struggle, what still need to be done for total emancipation and regaining of our un-encumbered sovereignty and the development of a just and equitable society for all peoples.

Details regarding the upcoming Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Seminar Series, “Sobukwe’s Quest for an African University: Representations and Misrepresentations of a Man of Vision in Post-Apartheid South Africa”, are as follows:

DATE: Tuesday, 27th February, 2018
VENUE: University of Fort Hare, Blue Auditorium, New Arts Building, Alice
TIME: 14:00 – 16:00
PRESENTER: Dr. Luvuyo Dondolo, Director, Centre for Transdisciplinary Studies, UFH
RESPONDENT: Dr. Neo Lekgotla laga Ramoupi, Wits School of Education, Wits University
RSVP: Ms. Khayakazi Mndi via email: or call 043 704 7352

“Through this Seminar Series, we wish to acknowledge Sobukwe’s intellectual prowess, and to celebrate his philosophical contributions in the African intellectual tradition. We remember Sobukwe for the sacrifices he endured for the nation, and recognize his acute resilience in articulating in the the most definitive manner, the true aspirations of our people”, said the Chief Operations Officer of the Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Trust, Mr. Mangaliso Tsepo Sobukwe.

The upcoming Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Seminar Series will give voice to the forgotten and silenced ‘Son of the Soil; through his experience, it is an attempt at inscribing marginalized perspectives, outlooks and approaches that have been systematically erased from our collective national consciousness and memory bank.

The Director of the Centre for Transdisciplinary Studies, Dr. Luvuyo Dondolo said: “Sobukwe belongs to a generation of significant, but lonely, intellectual leaders, distinguishable by their devotion, dedication and determination. He had a specific mission in life and refused to give up, even in death. We remember his intellectual and political contributions in the liberation struggle, more so his consistent selfless devotion to de-colonial discourse”.

Issued by the Robert Sobukwe Trust

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