President's Letter to Members 08 December 2020

Good day, 

We trust you are well. 

Please note that our SASA President, Trevor Ngwane has penned a letter to members, click here to access it. The SASA executive and council would like to wish everyone well for the festive season, happy holidays. 

Best regards, 

Percyval Bayane

Call for Paper: SARS Special Issue on Covid-19



GUEST EDITORS: Letitia Smuts (UJ), Chinwe Obuaku-Igwe (UWC) and Tawanda Sydesky Nyawasha (UL)


The crisis brought on by COVID-19 is not only a health crisis but also a social crisis that threatens the very reproduction of society itself. It is not a problem that can only be solved from a medical or economic perspective. It requires an appreciation of our past and our social context. While it might be too early to determine the magnitude of the impact that the virus will have on society, the emergence of the pandemic calls for detailed sociological predictions, analysis, and insights. As the world is reeling from the deadly effects of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), several questions are being asked. What does this pandemic mean to ; the individual; to human relations; and to communities? How will the economic ordering of society look like post-COVID-19? How will countries around the globe recover from this pandemic? And what will this recovery mean to the broader economic and political economy of disease control and management, especially in poorly resourced economies of the South? Undoubtedly, the pandemic has come with massive disruptions in human, social, and economic life.  How do we make sense of these disruptions sociologically? Are these disruptions theoretically significant? These are big sociological questions with no single explanation. In this special issue, we seek contributions that grapple with these questions and offer incisive sociological insights. The issue seeks to provide a platform for foundational theoretical and empirical reflections on a pandemic whose character or shape is yet to be fully understood, not only in South Africa - but across the world. It is hoped that such reflections will form the basis for future sociological discussions on COVID-19 in South Africa and beyond.

The South African Review of Sociology invites papers that covers the following areas of interests:

COVID-19 and state governmentality; COVID-19 and the role of the social sciences; COVID-19 and the changing face of human work; Methodology, ethics and fieldwork during and post-COVID-19; Misinformation and the political economy of health; COVID-19 and inequalities in heath and society; Intergenerational solidarity, family networks and community cohesion in the time of the pandemic; COVID-19 and Care work; COVID-19, the human condition and precarity in South Africa.

Other themes may also be considered.

Submission and Guidelines:

Prospective contributors should submit an abstract of no more than 500 words double-line spaced by 15th September 2020. Theoretical and empirical submissions that will deepen and advance sociological knowledge on COVID-19 can be emailed to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The guest editors will communicate their feedback by 5th October 2020. Selected contributors will be expected to submit full length manuscripts (no more than 8,000 words) by 16 November 2020.

For selected manuscripts, text must be in 12pt, Times New Roman font, 1.5 line spacing. Submissions should be uploaded to Accepted manuscripts will appear in the special issue expected to be published mid-2021.

Call for Papers: Special Issue on Phenomenology and Virtuality

Call for papers:

Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology

Special issue : Phenomenology and Virtuality

Edited by Gregory Swer and Jean du Toit


Our age is typified by technology (Kroes & Meijers, 2016: 12), but it is the question of the virtual that has particularly come to the forefront after the turn of the century. The contemporary era of emergent digital technologies has seen the multiplication of virtual spaces – our civilizations are indeed steeped in the virtual – which has resulted in complex changes to the dimensions of our existence and experience. While thinkers such as Baudrillard (in Simulacra and Simulation (1981)) emphasize a dichotomous relationship between reality and virtual reality, the enmeshed character of modern individuals within emergent virtual spaces may call into question the continuing relevance of such oppositions.

The term virtuality (a conflation of the words reality and virtual) may present a challenge to dichotomous views on reality and the virtual. Virtuality does not merely refer to virtual reality, but rather – in a broader sense – circumscribes the many virtual spaces that arise from modern digital technologies within the life-world of the individual. Virtuality denotes not merely those ‘obvious’ virtual spaces that one engages with via so-called VR headsets and goggles, but rather the multitudinous forms of the virtual that already find their occurrence through social media networking sites and data transfer technologies, through instant communication (words spoken or written by one person and sent to another), through cell phones and TV screens, through advertising (targeted or otherwise), and by means of geographical guidance via GPS systems. The modern individual is immersed within virtuality, and we are living in a world of technological appearances wherein making sense of virtuality is becoming increasingly pressing.

A danger of the technological expansion of the virtual, especially as the virtual heads inexorably towards omnipresence, is that everything seems to fall apart into mere appearances.  Robert Sokolowski formulates the problem of appearances in our technological era in terms of three phenomenological themes: 1) parts and wholes, 2) identity in manifolds, and 3) presence and absence. He argues that we are “flooded by fragments without any wholes, by manifolds bereft of identities, and by multiple absences without any enduring real presence. We have bricolage and nothing else, and we think we can even invent ourselves at random by assembling convenient and pleasing but transient identities out of the bits and pieces we find around us. We pick up fragments to shore against our ruin” (Sokolowski, 2000: 3-4). Sokolowski suggests that, in our engagement with the virtual, we are caught up in a crisis of appearances. However, are other avenues open to us?

If phenomenology allows one to “return to the things themselves” (Husserl, 2001: 168), to “describe the basic structures of human experience and understanding from a first person perspective” (Carman, 2002: viii), then the individual’s encounter with virtuality is a problem that phenomenology is particularly suited to address. It is the aim of this special issue to promote interest in the emerging field of the phenomenology of virtuality, and insights from a wide variety of phenomenological perspectives (and multi-disciplinary viewpoints in conversation with phenomenology) are welcomed in addressing this topic.

Topics of discussion could include (but are not limited to) the following:

-          What is the relation between virtuality and phenomenology? In what ways may traditional phenomenological thought be re-deployed to gain insight into virtuality?

-          What is the relation / differences between non-virtual and virtual being? Is it possible to distinguish reality from virtuality?

-          How is selfhood constituted in virtuality? What does inter-subjectivity look like in this regard?

-          How are the notions of gender and race constituted in virtuality?

-          What is the relation / lack of relation between cognitive science and phenomenological interpretations of virtuality?

-          What is the relation between virtuality and the imaginary?


The contributors must submit their papers before 24 August 2020, with expected publication of papers towards the end of the year.

Link to online CFP: HTTPS://BIT.LY/2NGPWCX

Please send articles to:

Gregory Swer (editor of the journal): Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Jean du Toit (guest editor of the special issue): Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Newly SASA Exec and Council elected

The SASA Council for the period 2021 - 2022 was elected at the Annual General Meeting:  The executive for this period is President: Chinwe Obuaku-IgweVice President: Trevor NgwaneTreasurer: Bianca TameSecretary: Aisha Lorgat Congratulations!