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Decolonisation as Democratisation: Global Insights into the South African Experience

Siseko H. Kumalo, editor
Decolonisation as Democratisation: Global Insights into the South African Experience
ISBN: 978-0-7969-2600-5
ISBN: 978-0-7969-2616-6
2021/233 pages
Distributed for HSRC Press
"A timely, insightful and thought-provoking contribution to the critical debate and discussion on the decolonisation of the academy. The well-argued ideas presented are deeply captivating, challenging and incisive."—Sizwe Mabizela, Rhodes University

"Brings together the best thinking from education and philosophy to explore the vexed question of the decolonisation of knowledge in relation to the democratic project. This powerful book is unflinching in its treatment of vexed topics in the decolonisation debates such as indigeneity, blackness, desire, dogmatism and of course, solidarity."—Jonathan D. Jansen, Stellenbosch University


The authors of this thought-provoking book explore the ways in which decolonization protects the democratic ideal of academic freedom—and at the same time caution against using that freedom to protect interests seeking to undermine the transformation of higher education.

Basing their discussion on the South African experience, the authors emphasize the responsibility of scholars to ensure the relevance of what they teach and to promote democratic change within the academy. In the process, they highlight the need for a collaborative, pragmatic approach to calls for curriculum reform in the context of decolonization.


Siseko H. Kumalo is studying political philosophy at the University of Pretoria. He was featured by the Mail & Guardian in 2020 as one of South Africa's Top 200 Young South Africans.


  • Educational Desire as the South African Epistemic Decolonial Turn—the Editor.
  • How to Decolonize Knowledge Without Too Much Relativism—V. Mitova.
  • Complexities and Challenges of Decolonizing Higher Education: Lessons From Canada—Sharon Stein et al.
  • Beyond Possession: De/colonizing the Educational Relationship in Higher Education—F. Pirbhai-Illich and F. Martin.
  • Socratic Social Criticism in Higher Education—the Editor.
  • The Anatomy of Epistemicide and the Search for Epistemic Justice: Towards a Relevant Education—T.J. Lebakeng.
  • Embracing an Ethical Epistemological Approach in African Higher Education—Y. Freter and B. Freter.
  • Decolonization and Displacement: Mbembe and Decolonizing the University—A. Olivier.
  • Funda-mentalities: Twists and Turns in South African Philosophy (of Education)—U. Kistner.
  • Futurity, Decolonization, and the Academy: Where to From Here?—the Editor.
  • Afterword—Siphamandla Zondi.