Activities Archive

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Displaying 11 - 20 of 53
Date: Thu, 16/02/2017 - 20:00
By: Christa Kuljian
There is broad agreement in the scientific world today that all humans share common origins in Africa. In this lecture, Christa Kuljian will explore this trend and review the history of genetics and palaeoanthropology over the past century. The lecture will provide insight on the search for human origins in South Africa and share stories that shed new light on the past.
Date: Tue, 14/02/2017 - 18:30
By: Susan Pfeiffer, University of Toronto, Canada
Western Cape
For several millennia, coastal and near-coastal immediate-return foragers were the only humans in southern Africa. The evidence left behind is extensive, yet biased. Our challenge is to constructively merge information from modern population genetics, palaeo-linguistics, field archaeology and the study of human remains into a story that is both accurate and complete.
Date: Sun, 20/11/2016 - 09:15
By: Outing led by Morris Viljoen
This field trip is aimed at showcasing many of Gauteng's as well as South Africa's geological superlatives and geoheritage sites from an excellent vantage point, the summit of the Magaliesberg range above the Hartbeespoort Dam, which we will access by means of the recently re-established Hartbeespoort Cableway.
Date: Tue, 08/11/2016 - 18:00
By: Janette Deacon
Western Cape
This illustrated talk will report on a visit to the British Museum exhibition entitled "South Africa: the art of a nation" that will be on display in London from 27 October 2016 to 26 February 2017.
Date: Sat, 05/11/2016 - 10:00
By: With Dr Jill Weintroub and Professor John Wright
On the Trail of Qing and Orpen opened at the Standard Bank Gallery at the end of January 2016. The exhibition examines the history of a well-known article, titled 'A glimpse into the mythology of the Maluti Bushmen', published by Cape colonial official Joseph Orpen in the Cape Monthly Magazine in 1874. The article was based on stories and cultural information recorded by Orpen from a bushman guide named Qing in the Maloti mountains of what is now Lesotho. Since the 1970s, Orpen's article has become foundational to the interpretation of southern African rock art. But relatively little has been done to put it in the context of its times. This is one of the aims of the exhibition.
Date: Sun, 23/10/2016 - 09:00
By: Outing with Professor Karim Sadr
The tour will take us to the Suikerbosrand Nature Reserve, which is about an hour's drive south of Johannesburg. It contains more than 700 pre-colonial stone-walled ruins, the densest cluster of such structures in southern Gauteng. Professor Sadr's study of these ruins indicated that the original structures were built in a sequence of four phases, from the 16th to the 19th century.
Date: Thu, 13/10/2016 - 20:00
By: Brendan Billings
For decades the concept that the mammalian brain is especially suited for complex cognition has been well accepted. In recent years, birds have been shown to match, or even outperform, many mammals on similar tests for cognitive ability. Birds and mammals evolved from reptilian ancestors, raising the question of whether reptilian ancestors may have already had the neural circuitries necessary for complex cognition. To date, the reptilian brain has not been examined in the same detail as that of the mammalian or avian brain.
Date: Tue, 11/10/2016 - 18:00
By: Robert M Kaplan of the University of Wollongong, Australia
Western Cape
The shamanic state is a human constant, arising from the substrate of the brain. Hunter-gatherer shamanism is based on altered states of consciousness, induced  by a variety of means.
Date: Sun, 25/09/2016 - 10:30
By: Mbali Zwane
Sophiatown was originally a farm outside Johannesburg. It was bought by Hermann Tobiansky, who named it after his wife, Sophia. Subsequently, the area became a 'Whites Only' area. When a sewage dump was built next to the area, White people did not want to live there anymore, and they moved. Later, Blacks and Coloureds were given permission to settle there by the owner. It was early in the morning at 4 AM on the 9th of February, 1955, when 2000 policemen entered Sophiatown heavenly armed. They bulldozed each and every building and forcibly removed Blacks to Meadowlands, Coloureds were moved to western native township and 'Indians' to Lenasia. They renamed Sophiatown Triomf. For more than 50 years everybody was convinced that Sophiatown would never be alive again but in 1994 the ANC won the election and in 1996 the process of renaming Sophiatown started. In 2006, Triomf was officialy renamed Sophiatown. Mbali Zwane, our guide, will take us to the famous landmarks including the Church of Christ the King where Father Trevor Huddleston played a leading role in the community. We will finish at the museum.
Date: Thu, 15/09/2016 - 20:00
By: Professor Lyn Wadley
Ju/'hoan hunters from Nyae Nyae in Namibia, demonstrate the manufacture of three fixative pastes made from plant extracts, and poison made from processed grubs and plants. Extracts from bulbs and tree gum produce simple glue. Plant latex mixed with carbonized grass is a compound adhesive. Composite poison is made from poison grub viscera mixed with salivary extracts of bark and the tuber sap of Asparagus. In order to document potential variability in the chaîne opératoire, and to eliminate inherent biases associated with unique observations, manufacturing processes were recorded in three separate Nyae Nyae villages. Although there are methodological similarities, we observed a few differences in contemporary traditions of poison manufacture.