Prof Lesley Green

Prof Lesley Green was awarded the 2023 ASSAf Humanities Book Award (category ‘Established Researcher’) for her book Rock|Water|Life: Ecology and Humanities for a Decolonial South Africa. In Rock | Water | Life Lesley Green examines the interwoven realities of inequality, racism, colonialism, and environmental destruction in South Africa.  She asserts the need for environmental research and governance to transition to help address South Africa’s history of racial oppression and environmental exploitation. Offering in-depth studies of environmental conflict in contemporary South Africa, Green addresses the history of contested water access in Cape Town; struggles over fracking in the Karoo; the call for the decolonization of science; land restitution versus the politics of soil; contests over baboon management; and the politics of sewage. Lesley Green is a Professor of Anthropology and the Director of Environmental Humanities South at the University of Cape Town.  She has recently been awarded a US$4.4m grant by Science For Africa Foundation to develop a social science of the African anthropocene in partnership with universities in Ethiopia, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, and the HSRC and Leeds University.