Dr Janet Hayword



Dr Hayward has taught anthropology for almost 30 years and conducted extensive ethnographic research in the former Transkei region of the Eastern Cape, especially among amaMpondo communities along the north-eastern coast.

Her doctoral research area is a narrow coastal strip extending from the mouth of the Msikaba River to the mouth of the Mbashe River, also known as the ‘Wildcoast’. The research participants are members of clans founded by European and Asian men who were incorporated into Mpondo and Bomvana societies between 150 and 300 years ago. The research is interdisciplinary, including the collection of oral traditions and ethnography of ritual practice in which

such traditions retain contemporary relevance. A review of documented history and Y-chromosome DNA analysis provide additional insight into histories of descent from foreign forebears. Such histories of cultural and racial integration stand out as stark exceptions against the brutal colonial and apartheid contexts in which they occurred, providing alternative models for South Africa’s present and future.

Dr Hayward’s teaching specialisations include Cape Nguni ethnography, Indigenous Knowledge Systems, Biological anthropology, Kinship & Marriage, Medical anthropology and Gender Studies.



A3 Service Learning

Before the university closed to prevent the spread of Covid-19, Anthropology 3 students had begun a   service-learning project with senior citizens from Ethembeni Service Centre in Joza, Makhanda. They were  to have fortnightly meetings with these elders, during which they would engage with them to provide  entertainment and stimulation. At the same time, this would give students an opportunity to put  anthropological research skills into practice with a view to producing the life histories of their informants.  The project has been postponed and we eagerly await it starting up again.



Last Modified: Wed, 11 Nov 2020 13:58:53 SAST

Dr Janet Hayward

Interviews with the descendants of people shipwrecked along the Eastern Cape coast.
Dr Janet Hayward