Projects

J.M. Coetzee: A Critical Biography

The Nobel laureate J.M. Coetzee is currently South Africa’s most resourceful and influential writer. While his roots lie in the Western Cape and Karoo in particular, his intellectual reach embraces Western and Central Europe and much of the United States. His fiction and nonfiction are read and studied throughout the world, from Rio to Beijing, … [Read more]

The role of inhibitory and disinhibitory processes in the brain in the formation of esthetic judgement

Scholars in the humanities continue to resist the possible applications of the cognitive neurosciences to the understanding of cultural phenomena.  No rigorous effort has been made to bring recent developments in the study of the neural substrate of the relationship between emotional and motor responses to the understanding of the visual arts. Recent work on … [Read more]

Moments of awakening: Apartheid and the making of a psychologist

“Moments of Awakening,” is the last project that will bring to completion the trilogy of life writing projects initiated in 2005. The completion of the first two projects in the series in 2011 has opened up an opportunity for the completion of the last project in the trilogy. Conceived as what is sometimes termed intellectual … [Read more]

Institutional Innovations and Investments: Creating an Enabling Environment for Emerging Agro-Enterprises in Africa

Agro-enterprises make important contributions to employment and income generation in developing countries, occupying a strategic position in manufacturing that comprise an essential supply-source of food and fiber production and represent an important demand-driver for agricultural products. The economic performance of agro-enterprises in no small measure depends on their ability to attract capital and new technologies.  … [Read more]

The Boxing Economy of the Eastern Cape

What is the link between the national formal economy on the one hand, and on the other, local community based economic cultures, which may have been largely self-sustaining but interminably precarious? What goes with the working title of “the boxing economy of the Eastern Cape” seems one such local economy. The boxing culture of East … [Read more]

Interpreting the life of Chief Albert Luthuli

This is a study of the legacies and meanings of Chief Luthuli’s life in history and today. It will unpack the character of his Christianity, what Luthuli understands by ‘God’s will, holy and perfect’ and notions like ‘divine discontent’ and the ‘gospel of service. It also examines the relationship between rationality, passion and sacrifice in … [Read more]

Health care interactions in multicultural societies

Communication has been identified as the single biggest barrier to health care and the provision of culturally and linguistically appropriate services is a top priority, particularly in light of the illness burden imposed by diseases such as HIV/AIDS. A body of research has emerged in Sweden and South Africa on communication strategies in medical interaction, with a … [Read more]

Approaching Human-Environment System (HES) based transdisciplinary processes: The case of Global Transdisciplinary Processes for Sustainable Phosphorus Management

Humankind is facing a new age, i.e. the anthropocene, with new problems. Thus, also science is facing new intellectual and methodological challenges. The term anthropocene has been coined by Paul Crutzen and means that human activities have become a geological factor. Actually, the impacts of human action are affecting many earth system processes such as … [Read more]

Basic questions of ethics

Today ethics have to be formulated for pluralistic societies that encompass a variety of religions and worldviews including the “secular option”. Whereas former secularization theories included the assumption that in modern societies only secular forms of ethics are of general importance, according to a pluralistic theory of society religious ethics have to be included as … [Read more]

The scientific method in biology and biomedicine

Philosophers tend to explain the success of the scientific enterprise in terms of a so-called “scientific method” believed to be typical of physics and chemistry. In the second half of the twentieth century, it has become widely accepted that biology, i.e. the science of living organisms, is characterized by an inherent complexity that requires the … [Read more]