Prof Philip Nel
Research Fellow
Centre for Gender & Africa Studies
P O BOX 706
President Steyn Annex

Short CV

Prof Nel obtained his doctorate in 1982 from the University of Stellenbosch under the supervision of Prof F C Fensham and Prof H Gese (University of Tübingen, Germany). He was appointed Senior Lecturer at the University of the Free State in 1975, and from 1995 to 2005 as Head of the Department Near Eastern Studies (later Afroasiatic Studies, Sign Language and Language Practice). Since 2002 he is also Director of the Africa Studies Programme. Various research visits have been made abroad as well as participation in archaeological projects in Israel. Amongst his academic interests are: Near Eastern cultures and literature, biblical literature and aspects of African indigenous cultures, religion and knowledge systems.

Publications (Short List)


2005 Nel, P J Indigenous Knowledge Systems: Contestation, Rhetorics and Space. Indilinga 4/1, 1-14.

2005 Nel, P J Indigenous Knowledge Systems in Theory and Practice. Indilinga 4/1, vii-xiii.

2005 Nel, P J I am a worm. Metaphor in Ps 22. Journal of Semitics 14/1, 40-54.

2005 Nel, P J Animal Imagery in Ps 22. Journal of Northwest Semitic Languages 31/1, 75 -88.

2004 Nel, P J, Moleleki, M and Masoga, M A, African diviner-healer and oral performance: Sepedi divination oral performance in perspective. Acta Academica 36/1,40-53.

2004 The Queen of Sheba: A colonial icon. JSem 13/1, 95-105.

2004 Ps 19: The unbearable lightness of perfection. JNSL 30/1, 103-117.

2003 The Bible: Text and subversion. HTS 59/3, 881-897.

2003 Nel, P J and Schmidt, N F. The rhetoric of the theophany of Job. OTE 16/1, 70-95.

Area(s) of Interest

  • Old Testament Poetics
  • Near Eastern Cultures
  • African Culture, Religion and Indigenous Knowledge Systems


T: +27 51 401 2240 or

Marizanne Cloete: +27 51 401 2592

Katlego Mabulana: +27 51 401 2495
Juanita Hlongwane: +27 51 401 3269

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