RETAGS PhD Scholarship 2020

4 Mar 2020 - 12:30

Please note that the deadline for the Reimagining Tragedy from Africa and the Global South (RETAGS) PhD Scholarship call has been extended to the 3rd of April 2020.

The Centre for Theatre, Dance and Performance Studies (CTDPS) at the University of Cape Town launched an innovative, new five-year research project at the beginning of 2019, Reimagining Tragedy from Africa and the Global South, funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This project proposes to take a concept – tragedy - from the very beginnings of theatre in its European manifestation and to reimagine it from a perspective in Africa that is at once directed at the complex challenges of our global postcolonial present and towards our possible futures both inside and outside of the discipline.

The project is led by Mark Fleishman with Mandla Mbothwe, and aims to understand how tragedy has been refigured in the post-colonial theatre; how moments of tragic excess are enacted outside of the theatre in the course of revolts against neo-colonial establishments and forces; and, in an embodied, performative manner, how tragedy might be utilized as a tool for understanding the present regime of time and its performative effects in the global neo-colonial complex that characterizes the world as it is emerging now across all hemispheres.

It is a project that will radically reorient thinking about theatre by shifting its dominant perspectives; re-read the postcolony through the frame of tragedy; explore the relevance of tragedy for a young generation today; while adopting a methodology rooted in art practice. One of the aims of the project is to enable training for a new generation of African Theatre and Performance scholars and provide a vehicle and catalyst for the development of research capacities and a community of researchers in the newly formed Centre for Theatre, Dance and Performance Studies in the faculty of Humanities at UCT.

To this end, we are pleased to offer for studies beginning in 2020: One three-year PhD scholarship, to the value of R130,000 in 2020 and 2021, and R135,000 in 2022, the second and third years of funding being subject to satisfactory academic progress,

To a students at an appropriate level with a theatre/dance / performance studies background and who has a demonstrable interest in the themes of the project.

The questions of equity, redress, diversity and inclusion are central to the project. We particularly encourage applications from women and black (and especially African) South African students.

Conditions of Award:

• Candidates must hold an appropriate Masters degree.

• Eligible candidates will be required to register for full-time study for the degree of PhD in the CTDPS, and to comply with the University of Cape Town’s approved policies, procedures and practices.

• The successful candidates will be required to participate in all activities of the Reimagining Tragedy project and must be willing to align their research with the project themes.

• The successful candidates may hold other awards concurrently with this scholarship.

• The award restricts part-time employment to a maximum of 12 hours per week.

Application Procedure:

Suitable candidates are required to email the following as one PDF document by 3rd of April 2020 to

• A letter of motivation, including a brief outline of what interests you about the project and its research themes.

• One academic writing sample.

• A complete and up-to-date curriculum vitae.

• Full transcripts of academic record.

• Copy of ID document (or copy of passport in the case of foreign applicants).

Application deadline: 20 March 2020

Commencement of fellowship: By 30 June 2020

For more information please contact or call (+27) 021 650 7121.

The University of Cape Town reserves the right to disqualify ineligible, incomplete or inappropriate applications. The University of Cape Town reserves the right to change the conditions of the award or to make no awards at all.