Prof Neo Lekgotla Laga Ramoupi
Associate Professor
Faculty of Humanities
Department of History
IB 29
Animal Research Centre

Short CV

Neo Lekgotla laga Ramoupi (He/His) is an Associate Professor of History in the Department of History at the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein, South Africa.

Professor Ramoupi`s ancestral home is Tlhakong (Mabeskraal) and Tlhatlhaganyane in Rustenburg, North West Province, South Africa; and he was born in Lady Sylborne, outside Pretoria and was raised and schooled in Ga-Rankuwa, north-west of Pretoria. He attended all his schooling in Ga-Rankuwa: Lesego Primary, Tswelelang Middle School, Modiri High & Setlalentoe High Schools.

He started his academic studies at the Bantustan university in Mafikeng, University of Bophuthatswana (UNIBO) in 1987 and in 1989 he transferred to the University of Natal, Durban (UND), Howard College, where he completed his BA History & Political Sciences, BA Honours History, Higher Diploma in Education (H.D.E.), and MA in History with specialization on Oral History Methodologies in 1999.

In 2000 Ramoupi was employed as a Researcher and Oral Historian in the Research Unit of the Heritage Department at Robben Island Museum (RIM), on Robben Island, Cape Town. After three years on Robben Island, Ramoupi`s research work at RIM earned him the Ford Foundation International Fellowship that took him in 2003 to Howard University in Washington D.C., USA, to study for a PhD in African History major and minors in African Studies and Public History. At Howard Ramoupi wrote his doctoral dissertation on Robben Island Maximum Security Prison, titled “‘Izingoma zo Mzabalazo Esiqithini!’[1] Role of Songs in the African Liberation Struggle of South Africa, 1960-1991. A Culture History of Robben Island.” Professor Ramoupi is finalizing the manuscript based on his dissertation for publication in 2023 titled _Cultural Resistance on Robben Island: Songs of Struggle and Liberation in South Africa_. An excerpt from one of the book`s chapter, "A Culture of Black Consciousness on Robben Island, 1970 - 1980" is accessible here

Ramoupi is the co-editor of Robben Island and Rainbow Dreams: The Making of Robben Island Museum, First Official Heritage Institution of Democratic South Africa, Pretoria: HSRC Press/BestRed, 2021. Lynne Rienner Publishers | Robben Island Rainbow Dreams The Making of Democratic South Africa s First National Heritage Institution.



Fieldtrips Research in African Countries


Between 2011 and 2017 Professor Ramoupi conducted fieldwork research in African countries at the University of Dar es Salaam`s (UDS) Pan African Studies Department, Tanzania; University of Ghana, Legon, Accra (UGL)`s Department of African Studies; and in 2017 as African Humanities Program Fellow (AHP), he was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at UGL`s International Institute for Advanced Studies (IIAS);  University of Ibadan (UI)`s Department of African Studies; and Senegal, Dakar where he attended African Higher Education Conference and visited Codesria in Dakar where his article was being published by Journal of Higher Education in Africa (JHEA).


Editorial Board Membership Positions:

Professor Ramoupi is a member of the Advisory Board of America’s Voices Against Apartheid (AVAA); and serves as the Editorial Board member of the following two journals: African Historical Review (UNISA) African Historical Review ( African Historical Review (; and Black Histories Dialogues



Email Addresses:

Professor Neo Lekgotla laga Ramoupi is contactable here: and

Students interested to work with me as their Advisor/Supervisor/Mentorships on their Theses and Dissertations from South Africa, Africa, the African Diaspora, and Internationally &



Publications (Short List)




Robben Island and Rainbow Dreams: The Making of Robben Island Museum, First Official Heritage Institution of Democratic South Africa, Pretoria: HSRC Press/BestRed, 2021. Lynne Rienner Publishers | Robben Island Rainbow Dreams The Making of Democratic South Africa s First National Heritage Institution.



Reflections of South African University Leaders: 1981 – 2014, Cape Town:  African Minds Publishers (2016), Co-Edited with Johan Muller, Emeritus Professor in the School of Education at UCT. &

Book Chapters


Racism in Higher Education: Privileges and Exclusions at Universities in South Africa”, in Paradise Lost: Race and Racism in Post-Apartheid South Africa, (Eds.  Gregory Houston, et al). Brill Publishers, Netherlands. (Chapter Five)  Paradise Lost – Race and Racism in Post-apartheid South Africa | Brill.


Towards A Decolonized School History Curriculum in Post-Colonial-Apartheid South Africa Through the Legitimation Code Theory”, in Eds. Mlamuli Nkosingphile Hlathswayo, et al., in Decolonising knowledge and knowers: Struggles for university transformation in South Africa, New York: Routledge Taylor & Francis Group, 2022. (Co-authored with Paul Maluleka). Decolonising Knowledge and Knowers: Struggles for University Transform (

Co-authored Four Chapters in Robben Island and Rainbow Dreams: (2021)

  1.  Introduction, 
  2. Chapter 27: “Participation In Progress: The Story of Robben Island Museum’s Ex-Political Prisoner Reference Groups”.
  3. Chapter 29: “Journey To Sithebe Village: In Search of The First Political Prisoners In Robben Island Maximum Security Prison”.
  4. Chapter 34: “The Role of Robben Island Museum In The Transformation Of South Africa’s Cultural Landscape After Apartheid”.

“Cultural Resistance on Robben Island: Songs of Struggle and Liberation in Southern Africa”, in A Companion to African History, edited by William H, Worger, Charles Ambler and Nwando Achebe, Wiley-Blackwell Publishers: NJ, USA; 1st edition (2019). Front Matter (


“Africanisation of Knowledge in the Humanities in Africa: A Critique of the Cameroon and South African Experiences”, in Michael Cross and Amasa Ndofirepi (Eds.), Knowledge and Change in the African University – Volume 1 Current Debates, [African Higher Education: Developments and Perspectives], Netherlands: Sense Publishers, January 2017. (co-authored with Roland Ndille Ntongwe, University of Beau, Cameroon).

change-in-african-universities-1/  or    


“The Ties That Bind”: African-American Consciousness of Africa through Culture and Sports” in Jim C. Harper, II, Charles D. Johnson, et al, Eds., (Jarvis Hargrove, Tony Frazier) Topics in African Diaspora History, USA: Kendall Hunt Publishing Company, 2016.  


Peer Reviewed Journal Articles


“The Black Man in the White Man’s Court”: Mandela at Wits University, South Africa, 19431949, Ufahamu: A Journal of African Studies, Current Issue, Volume 39, Issue 2, 2016. (


“A Response to WITS & an Update on a Push for Change in Higher Academia in South Africa”,  co- authored with Worger, William H., Ufahamu: A Journal of African Studies, Volume 38, Issue 3, 2015  (Commemorative Special Edition)


“Black Students Speak Their Minds at UCT: Bantu Biko Alive in Their Frank-Talk”, Ufahamu: A Journal of African Studies, Volume 38, Issue 3, 2015 (Commemorative Special Edition)


“African Languages Policy in Education of South Africa: 20 Years of Freedom or Subjugation?” Journal of Higher Education in Africa (JHEA) Volume 12, Number 2, 2014, Codesria JHEA/RESA Vol. 12, No. 2, 2014, pp.53- 93


“African Research and Scholarship: 20 Years of Lost Opportunities to Transform Higher Education in South Africa”, Ufahamu: A Journal of African Studies, 38 (1) December 2014 (UCLA), [Special South African Edition to mark twenty years since the end of apartheid and a year since the passing of President Nelson Mandela] Link:


“Deconstructing Eurocentric Education: A Comparative Study of Teaching Africa-Centred Curriculum at the University of Cape Town and the University of Ghana, Legon,” Postamble: Multidisciplinary Journal of African Studies, Vol. 7, No. 2, June 2012. ( ) 


Occasional Paper, Vol. 16, 2012

Imperative of African-Centred Curriculum in South Africa, No. 16 2012. It is published by Africa Institute of South Africa, May 2012. Curriculum in South Africa


2021 Policy Brief

“African-Centred Education and African Languages: Content and Curriculum in Post-Apartheid Education and Training in South Africa”, Policy Brief, No.56, August 2011; published by Africa 

Institute  of  South  Africa. Education-and-African-Languages.pdf

Non-Peer Reviewed Publications


Contributor to Book, I Remember Nelson Mandela, Jacana Publishers, South Africa, 2018. 


Contributor to Wits University’s Issue/Edition of Curios.ty titled, Madiba 100.  

“Mandela Through Songs”.  



Area(s) of Interest

Research and Teaching Areas of Interests include:

Decolonising African History

Teaching The History of the Cold War Through Looking at Culture: Using Songs, Music, Films, Graffiti, Arts (Artists, Activists) as Historical (Re)Sources.

Africa and The Cold War.

Post-Graduate Seminar Readings in African Scholarship titled “Triple M Cases” – Mafeje; Makgoba and Mamdani. Reflections on Africanisation and Decolonisation in the Universities in South Africa. A Response to the Call to Decolonise Curriculum.

Courses Presented

Teaching To Teach in 2023


First Years – HIST1624: Twentieth Century World History.

Second Years – HIST 2624: Twentieth Century Global Clashes.

Third Years – HIST 3718: Enroute to the New South Africa and the African Renaissance – C. 1976 – 2000 – A Historical Perspective


Postgraduate – Structured M.A.

HIST 7926: Aspects of History of South Africa, CA 1961 – 1980 (24 Credits).

HISS7900: Dissertation/Thesis

Community Service

Service Learning

Community Engagement:

Transformation and Decolonisation of Higher Education Curriculum and Institutional Cultures in South African Universities.

During Professor Ramoupi taught for five years at Wits University School of Education, where he was the Interim Co-Chair (2018) and was appointed the Chairperson of the Transformation and Internationalisation & Partnership Committee (TIPC) - 2019 - August 2022.


T: +27 51 401 2240 or

Marizanne Cloete: +27 51 401 2592

Neliswa Emeni-Tientcheu: +27 51 401 2536
Phyllis Masilo: +27 51 401 9683

Humanities photo next to contact block

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