Prof Pieter Duvenage
Research Fellow
IB 43
Flippie Groenewoud Building: Block B

Short CV

Professor Pieter Duvenage (born 1963) has studied philosophy in South Africa (Stellenbosch, Pretoria and Port Elizabeth) and Germany (Göttingen and Frankfurt-am-Maine). He received his doctorate in 1994 from the University of Port Elizabeth (now Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University). After his first position as senior lecturer (1995) he has lectured philosophy from 1997 as an associate professor, full professor and visiting professor at various South African universities (Limpopo, UJ, NMMU) and two Australian universities with campuses in South Africa (Bond and Monash). On 1 October 2011 he became full professor and Head of the Department of Philosophy at the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein (South Africa). He is the author and co-author of four books and almost 40 accredited articles in journals and books. He specialises in political and social philosophy within the traditions of Critical Theory, Phenomenology/Hermeneutics and South African Intellectual History. He is accredited as a researcher by the NRF (National Research Foundation) since 2003 and a member of the Akademie (Suid-Afrikaanse Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns) since 2002.


DPhil: University of Port Elizabeth, 1994.


MA: University of Pretoria, 1989.


BLC (Law): University of Pretoria, South Africa, 1988. 

BA (Honours): University of Pretoria, South Africa, 1986 (degree received Cum Laude).


BA: University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, 1984 (received degree with four majors Cum Laude).

High school: High School Bellville (1977-1981). 

Primary school: Excelsior Primary School (1970-1976).



  • University of the Free State. Professor and Head, Department Philosophy (2011-present).
  • Monash (SA). Visiting lecturer (2006-2007), Senior Lecturer in Philosophy (2008-2011).
  • Visiting professor in Philosophy and Media Studies at NMMU, Port Elizabeth (2005).
  • Bond University (South Africa). Professor and Head of School for the Humanities and Social Sciences (also duties as acting Pro-Vice-Chancellor in June 2004) (2004-2005).
  • Rand Afrikaans University (RAU; now University of Johannesburg): Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Science (2001-2004). 
  • University of the North (now University of Limpopo). Senior lecturer (1995-1996), Associate Professor (1997-2000), Professor (2001) and Head of Department Philosophy (1997-2001).
  • Human Sciences Research Council: Senior Researcher in Centre for Research Methodology (Cenmet) and Centre for Science Development (CSD) (1992-1995).
  • Department of Foreign Affairs and doctoral research in philosophy (1990-1992).
  • Department of Philosophy (UNISA): Junior lecturer in Philosophy and doctoral research at the Universities of Göttingen and Frankfurt-am Maine in Germany (1987-1990%2

Publications (Short List)

Edited books/journals


Duvenage, P. 2014/15. Editor of an edition of the Dutch journal, Tijdschrift voor Filosofie, on South African philosophy. Forthcoming.


Book manuscripts in preparation


Duvenage, P. Critical Theory. An Interpretation. Manuscript on the three generations of Critical Theory (Horkheimer to Honneth/Forst).

Duvenage, P. Die Verskynsel van ‘n Afrikaanse Filosofie. Gesprekke met Filosowe. (Edited interviews with Afrikaans and South African philosophers in Afrikaans.)

Duvenage, P. Towards a Political Hermeneutics. Manuscript on Gadamer’s political hermeneutics and its critics.

Duvenage, P. Die Fenomenologie van Apartheid. Manuscript on apartheid. (In Afrikaans.)


Peer reviewed articles and book chapters


*Duvenage, P. 2014. “Afrikaner Intellectual History. An Interpretation.” In P. Vale and L. Hamilton (eds.): South African Intellectual History. Durban: UKZN Press (Forthcoming). 

*Duvenage, P 2012a. “Early Critical Theory and Habermas on Transcendence.” (pp. 119-136.) In W. Stoker; W. van der Merwe (eds.): Looking Beyond? Shifting Views of Transcendence in Philosophy, Theology, Art, and Politics. Amsterdam: Rodophi. (ISBN 978-90-420-3473-0)

*Duvenage, P. 2012b. “The Migration of Ideas and Afrikaans Philosophy in South Africa.” (pp. 105-120.) In W. Sweet; R. Feist (eds.): Migrating Texts and Traditions. University of Ottowa Press. (ISBN 978-0-7766-0707-8)


Refereed Articles (*= SAPSE accredited)


*Duvenage, P. 2015. “Rede, kritiek en samelewing: Drie sturende begrippe van Kritiese Teorie.” Tijdschrif voor Filosofie (Belgium) (forthcoming). Article on three generations of Critical Theory, English version will follow.  

*Duvenage, P. 2014b. “Nie-eensgesindheid in Eensgesindheid. Die verkiesing van Verwoerd as Eerste Minister in 1958.’’ Tydskrif vir Eietydse Geskiedenis. 39(1): 1-18. Article on the election of Verwoerd as prime minister in 1958.

*Duvenage, P. 2013a. “Praktiese wysheid (fronesis) in ‘n verdeelde samelewing.” Litnet 10(2) Augustus: 577-601. (ISSN 1995-5928; n/a.) For online, see An English version of this article, on phronesis, will follow. 

*Duvenage, P. 2013b. “Die kritiek van tradisie en die tradisie van kritiek in die Geesteswetenskappe. ‘n Rekonstruksie van die debat tussen Habermas en Gadamer.” Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe 54(4) Desember. (ISSN 0041-4751; Art nr.: n/a.) English version on Habermas/Gadamer debate will follow.

*Duvenage, P. 2010. “Reason and Religion. The case of Habermas. Sophia. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion, Metaphysical Theology, and Ethics 49(3): 343-357. (ISSN 0038-1527; Art. nr.: DOI 10.1007/s11841-010-0202-8)



Duvenage, P. 2014. "Authenticity in perspective. Interview with Alessandro Ferrara." (Forthcoming).

Duvenage, P. 2010. “Pieter Duvenage gesels met Danie Strauss oor menslike denke.” Litnet 11 Augustus. _id=1270&news_id=91129 Interview with the South African philosopher Danie Strauss.  


Book Reviews


Duvenage P. 2012. Marthinus Versfeld, Oor gode en Afgode, ingelei deur Ernst Wolff. SA Tydsrif vir Kultuurgeskiedenis 26 (2): 191-192.

Duvenage, P. 2011. “Politokrasie: Koos Malan se skerp bemoeienis met die territoriale staat.” Litnet, 25 Augustus. Aanlyn: news_item&cause _id=1270&news_id=108740.




Duvenage, P. 2013. “Gerrit Brand 1970-2013.” Litnet, 8 Maart 2013. Aanlyn by:


Current Research Projects


Duvenage, P. 2010. Annual NRF research grant of R40 000 for being a rated researcher C1 2015 -


Research fellowships


Erasmus Mundus Staff grant to visit Free University of Berlin (Nov 2012-Jan 2013).





Undergraduate courses offered at various South African universities: Modern philosophy (from Smith to Kant/Hegel); Critical Theory and Phenomenology/Hermeneutics; Aesthetics, Political Philosophy; Political Philosophy and Aesthetics; Modernity and Politics; Introduction to Ancient Greek Philosophy; Philosophy of language (Hermeneutics); Philosophy of Science; Introduction to Logic and Epistemology; Culture, Ethics, and Values; Modern philosophy and Ethics; Philosophy of Religion; Introduction to Communication Theory; Mass Communication; Communication and Globalisation; J.M. Coetzee’s Disgrace

Post-graduate courses offered at various South African universities: Introduction to Habermas’s Theory of Communicative Action; General Communication Theory; Aesthetics and Kant`s Critique of Judgement; Political Philosophy, Critical Theory and Honneth`s The Struggle for Recognition; Psychoanalysis and Freud`s The Ego and the Id (with Prof Bert Olivier); Political Philosophy and Kymlicka`s Multicultural Citizenship; Critical Theory and Horkheimer and Adorno`s Dialectic of the Enlightenment; Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics; Critical Theory from Horkheimer to Honneth.

Curriculum Development: Development of new philosophical curriculum at the University of the Free State (2011-2012); MPhil in Political Philosophy (course developed at the University of Pretoria 2011-12); M.Development Degree: Teaching of Research component (UNIN, 1998).

Acted as referee for various manuscripts, HSRC Publishers, and for various research proposals to the HSRC/NRF. Acted, since 1993, as referee for various accredited South African and international Journals.

External examiner for almost 20 MA studies and DPhil studies (1989-2014).

External examiner on a regular basis for undergraduate and postgraduate courses in philosophy: UP, UJ, US, and UNISA.

External examiner on a regular basis for undergraduate and postgraduate courses in communication studies at UJ and UNISA, visual communication at UP and political theory at UCT.

Supervision  and co-supervsion students (1996-2014): 2 MA`s uncompleted, 10 completed. 2 DPhil uncompleted, 3 DPhil completed.

Present administrative duties: research, teaching and administrative duties in the Department of Philosophy, University of the Free State.  




Rated as established researcher by the National Research Foundation of South Africa (subject panel: Political Sciences, Policy Studies, and Philosophy) in the C3 category (2003-2007). Re-rated in 2008 (categ

Area(s) of Interest

I am working, broadly speaking, in the following philosophical traditions and systematic areas.

Thinkers that have influenced me here are: Aristotle, Hegel, Husserl, Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, Gadamer, Arendt, Lyotard, and Derrida.

Critical Theory.
Thinkers that have influenced me here are: Horkheimer, Adorno, Marcuse, Habermas, Honneth, Fraser, Forst, Kompridis.

South African Intellectual History.
Thinkers that have influenced me here are: C.K. Oberholzer, N.P. van Wyk Louw, Johan Degenaar, André du Toit, Hermann Giliomee, and Danie Goosen.

I am working in the fields of political philosophy, social philosophy and the history of ideas on topics such as: reason and tradition, interpretation, practical wisdom, modernity, public sphere, forgiveness, memory, critique and democracy. 


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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