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South Africa: Continuity and Change

Summer Seminars and Institutes for School Teachers

Postmark Deadline: March 4, 2013

A five-week summer institute for twenty-five school teachers on the history and culture of South Africa to take place in Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Johannesburg and Durban.

This institute is led by historian Richard Corby (University of Arkansas at Monticello), English professor Liesel Hibbert (Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University) and curriculum specialist Kay Grant (Monticello, Arkansas). A formal, multidisciplinary study of South Africa's "History Roots," "Culture and Society," "Religion and Education," and "Economy and Government" takes place during the first two weeks of the institute at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in Port Elizabeth and the University of the Western Cape in Capetown. Lectures are given by the following faculty members at these two universities: historians Nico Jooste and Robert Otto Herbst; music scholar Leslie Hughes; literature scholar Marious L. Crous; health administrator Dalena van Rooyen; sociologist Peter Cunningham; religion scholars Bert Olivier, Martin Oosthuizen, and Yasien Mohamed; and educator Ghauderen Coetzee. Principal readings for the institute include Paul Bohannan and Philip Curtin, Africa and Africans; Leonard Thompson, A History of South Africa; Rita M. Byrnes, ed., South Africa: A Country Study; Allister Sparks, Tomorrow is Another Country; Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom; Alex La Guma, A Walk in the Night; and Nadine Gordimer, July's People. These initial weeks include visits to historical and cultural sites in and around Port Elizabeth and Cape Town. A larger field study takes place during the final three weeks of the institute. Participants visit the Grahamstown National Festival of the Arts, the Nelson Mandela Museum in Mthatha, the KwaMuhle Museum in Durban, the Ezulwini Valley in Swaziland, the Apartheid Museum and Soweto Township in Johannesburg, the Voortrekker Monument and Museum in Pretoria, the Open Mine Museum and the "Big Hole" in Kimberly. Back in Cape Town, participants visit the District Six Museum, Robben Island, and the Cape of Good Hope National Park and participate in final lecture/discussion sessions by additional scholars from the two host universities: economist Elizabeth Stolz, political scientist Keith Gottschalk, and education professor David Donald. Participants keep personal and group journals during the five weeks of the institute.

Faculty: Liesel Hibbert, Kay Grant

Dates: June 20—July 28 (5 weeks)
Director(s): Richard Corby, University of Arkansas, Monticello
Grantee Institutions: University of Arkansas, Monticello
Location: Port Elizabeth, Cape Town, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban, Swaziland, Grahamstown, and Kimberly, South Africa

About NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes for School Teachers

Each year the NEH’s Division of Education Programs offers teachers opportunities to study a variety of humanities topics in NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes. An NEH Summer Seminar for school teachers enables sixteen participants to explore a topic or set of readings with an expert scholar. The core material of the seminar need not relate directly to the school curriculum; the principal goal of the seminar is to engage teachers in the scholarly enterprise and to expand and deepen their understanding of the humanities through reading, discussion, writing, and reflection.

Amount of Award

NEH Summer Scholars are awarded fixed stipends to help cover travel costs, books and other research expenses, and living expenses. Stipend amounts are based on the length of the NEH Summer Seminar or Institute: $2,100 (2 weeks), $2,700 (3 weeks), $3,300 (4 weeks), $3,900 (5 weeks), or $4,500 (6 weeks).


Full-time teachers in American K-12 schools, whether public, charter, independent, or religiously affiliated, as well as home-schooling parents, are eligible to apply to NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes. Americans teaching abroad are also eligible if a majority of the students they teach are American citizens. Librarians and school administrators may also be eligible.

You may request information about as many projects as you like, but you may apply to no more than two NEH Summer Programs (seminars, institutes, or Landmarks workshops) and you may attend only one. Eligibility criteria differ significantly between NEH Summer Seminars and Institutes and NEH Landmarks Workshops.

Please note: Up to two seminar spaces and three institute spaces are available for current graduate students, who intend to pursue careers in K-12 teaching.

How to Apply

For more information and application instructions, please visit the program website listed above.