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Isabel Hofmeyr
Isabel Hofmeyr is Professor Emeritus at the University of the Witwatersrand and was Global Distinguished Professor at New York University from 2013 to 2023. She has worked extensively on the Indian Ocean world and oceanic themes more generally. Publications include Gandhi’s Printing Press: Experiments in Slow Reading (2013) and a special issue of Comparative Literature (2016) on 'Oceanic Routes' co-edited with Kerry Bystrom. More recent publications include Dockside Reading: Hydrocolonialism and the Custom House (2022) and a special issue on 'Reading for Water', Interventions 24 (3) 2022.
Charne Lavery
Charne Lavery is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of English at the University of Pretoria. She researches literary and cultural representations of the deep ocean, the Indian Ocean, and the Southern Ocean and Antarctic seas, exploring ocean writing of the global South in a time of environmental change. She is a South African Humanities and Social Sciences delegate to the International Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR), co-editor of the Palgrave book series Maritime Literature and Culture, and a board member of the journals Global Nineteenth-Century Studies and Alizés. Recent publications include co-edited special issues on ‘Water’ (Wasafiri), ‘Thinking Oceanically’ (Eastern African Literary and Cultural Studies) and ‘Reading for Water’ (Interventions), in addition to two co-edited books, Maritime Literature and Culture (Palgrave) and Reading from the South (Wits Press). Her monograph Writing Ocean Worlds: Indian Ocean Fiction in English (Palgrave) appeared in 2021.
Postdoctoral Fellows
Postdoctoral Fellows (current)
Confidence Joseph

Confidence Joseph is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pretoria. Her work combines decolonial and environmental approaches to explore the representation of water in Southern African Literature. In this she foregrounds water as a critical tool for, and object of analysis as she explores notions of displacement, identity, home and belonging. Reading for water surfaces the complex entanglements between the human and non-human, land, and water, the natural and the supernatural, in ways that speak to the multiple ways of being in the world.

Adrienne van Eeden-Wharton
Adrienne van Eeden-Wharton is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pretoria on the Antarctica, Africa and the Arts project, funded by the National Research Foundation (NRF) as part of the South African National Antarctic Programme (SANAP). As an artist-researcher, her praxis has been shaped by years of walking and gathering along the shores of the southern African mainland coast and adjacent islands, where she follows multispecies death assemblages. She is passionate about finding ways of re/storying fraught and entangled terraqueous relatings, and dreams of working in the polar regions.
Postdoctoral Fellows (past)
Jauquelyne Kosgei
Jonathan Cane
Postgradute Students
Postgraduate Students (current)
Nina Barnett

Nina Barnett’s creative practice uses drawings, immersive installations and experimental filmmaking to engage with questions of geography, infrastructure, materiality, and experiential knowledge. Her most recent exhibitions, entitled The Weight in the Air and On Breathing, reflected on radioactivity and mining waste particulate in the post-colonial atmosphere of Johannesburg. She is currently pursuing a PhD with the University of Johannesburg. Nina has an MFA from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a BFA from the University of the Witwatersrand.

Buhlebenkosi Dlodlo

Buhlebenkosi Dlodlo is a PhD student at WiSER and the Department of African Literature. She completed her MA in African Literature at the University of Witwatersrand. Framed within an ecocritical lens, her MA thesis examines how Yvonne Vera’s work critiques the

environmental crisis in Zimbabwe. In her PhD study, she is exploring how selected African

literature texts represent the militarisation of water. Her other research interests are in post-colonial literature.

Luck Makuyana
Luck Makuyana is PhD student at WiSER and the Department of African Literature at the University of Witwatersrand. He completed his MA in African Literature at the University of Witwatersrand in 2021. His master’s research project, ‘Hydro-colonialism: A Hydro-critical Reading of Three Texts on Kariba’, draws on Isabel Hofmeyr’s concept of hydro-colonialism which offers ways to think about water and hydrological themes from an ecological and post-colonial perspective. Building on this study, Luck’s PhD project explores ‘The Politics and Poetics of Dams in African Literature’ through a hydro-infrastructural analysis . His other research interests are in post-colonial literature.
Mapule Mohulatsi

Mapule Mohulatsi is an Oceanic Humanities for the Global South Fellow and PhD Candidate in the Department of African Literature at the University of the Witwatersrand, in

Johannesburg. She holds an MA in African Literature (with distinction). Her research

interests span across black intellectual traditions, black aesthetics and the deep ocean, recipes and food cultures as well as slave memory in South Africa, the Caribbean, and the Americas. She has joined the Department of English Literary Studies at the University of Cape Town as Lecturer.

Postgraduate Students (graduated)
Anézia António Asse
Confidence Joseph
Meghan Judge
Luck Makuyana
Mapule Mohulatsi

Zoe Neocosmos
Rabia Abba Omar
Ryan Poinasamy

Oupa Sibeko
Lindsay Bremner
Joshua Bennet
Rimli Bhattacharya
Rose Boswell
Jonathan Cane
Sharad Chari
Yvette Christiansë
Alan Cobley
Margaret Cohen
Vilashini Cooppan
Elizabeth Deloughrey
Alexandra Ganser 

Euclides Gonçalves
Lesley Green
Ashleigh Harris
Simone Haysom
Kumari Issur
Saarah Jappie
Stephanie Jones
Melody Jue
Jauquelyne Kosgei

Elizabeth Leane
Bénédicte Letellier
Phindezwa Mnyaka
Mohammed Muharram
Sarah Nuttall
Suvendrini Perera
Laurence Publicover

Elspeth Probyn
Killian Quigley
Lynette Russell
Meg Samuelson
Tina Steiner
Lindy Stiebel
Lakshmi Subramanian
Hedley Twidle
Mona Webber
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