Rebekah Lee, senior lecturer in history at Goldsmiths, University of London, is a social and cultural historian of South Africa. Her central aim has been to describe the complexity of African lived experience and to inscribe that lived experience in a more dynamically configured relationship between the past and the present. She is the author of African Women and Apartheid: Migration and Settlement in Urban South Africa (Tauris Academic Studies, 2009).
Lee will use her fellowship to develop her second book, on death and memory in modern South Africa. This study seeks to treat the evolution of perceptions and practices around death as a window into the everyday lives and anxieties of ordinary Africans. Through an interdisciplinary approach combining archival research with oral historical and ethnographic techniques, this work explores the manifold consequences of dying in an increasingly mobile and interconnected world.
Lee received her DPhil and MPhil degrees from the University of Oxford and her BA from Harvard University. She is a corecipient of a major research grant from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (UK) and was recently honored with a Peake Learning and Teaching Award. Lee has published articles on gender, migration, religion, identity, and health in southern Africa.