HEARD is pleased to welcome new post-doctoral research fellow Dr Roselyn Kanyemba, who recently obtained her PhD in anthropology at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Kanyemba will be working with HEARD Research Director Dr Kaymarlin Govender on the subject area of masculinities and HIV.

“The post-doctoral fellowship challenges and offers me an opportunity to expand from my PhD thesis which showed how toxic masculinity fuelled violence,” she said. Kanyemba’s thesis focused on the normalisation of sexist humour in higher education setting and showed how misogyny masquerading as humour has become institutionalised and embedded in daily lives of students in tertiary institutions. “Normalisation implies acceptance, and this has an impact on female students given that sexist humour has the potential to turn into sexual violence. My study was motivated by the assumption that women now have it all- equal access to education and right. The study revealed that inclusion does not translate into quality access as evidence by toxic masculinities manifesting through humour as a way of communicating how women did not belong in higher education,” she said.

Kanyemba hopes her time at HEARD will help her develop as an academic and hone her skills as a researcher to enable her to fulfil her ambition of bringing about meaningful chance and development in the lives of people in Africa.