Dr Iain Edwards

Lecturer in Undergraduate Studies

Dr Iain Edwards has a PhD from the University of Natal where he was a faculty member in the departments of history, economic history and African government, the Professor in the Humanities and Director of the University’s Campbell Collections. He has been a Visiting Fellow at Queen Elizabeth House, Oxford University and, in 1999/2000, a Rockefeller Fellow at the Oral History Research Office at Columbia University.  More recently he has been a ministerial advisor at both provincial and national levels of state within the new South African government. Dr EDWARDS joined Monash South Africa in 2004 as Head: International Studies. He was appointed Head: School of Arts from 2005 to 2007 and the Beyers Naudé Research Professor in 2008.

During the 1980’s, he was an advisor to various legal defence teams, providing pro bono expert historical testimony in defence of charged political activists.  Likewise, during the 1990’s he was an historical expert concerning restitution and restorative justice in court hearings in the South African Land Claims Courts.

Dr EDWARDS’ primary research interests lies in modern South African history and politics. Together with Natoo BABENIA, he is co-author of Memoirs of a Saboteur (Cape Town, Mayibuye Press, 1995), one of the first memoirs of an early Umkhonto we Sizwe cadre imprisoned on Robben Island for sixteen years.  He is also a co-editor and contributor to The People’s City: The History of African Life in Durban, (Heinemann & Natal University Press, New Haven & Pietermaritzburg, 1997). He was a specialist member of the African National Congress’ National Commission on Arts & Culture; spearheaded the development of South Africa’s first post-1990 public museum: the KwaMuhle Museum in Durban both leading the public campaign for its establishment and designing its founding strategic plan; and was a consultant historian for the Freedom Park Trust – South Africa’s new national heritage site.

He edited the memoirs of Mewa RAMGOBIN, a prominent Gandhian anti-apartheid activist, long-time chairperson of the Phoenix Settlement Trust and custodian of the Phoenix Settlement – GANDHI’s first ashram.  His latest book, Faith & Courage, is an edited collection from RAMGOBIN’s private political papers, which was published as an ebook by Amazon in 2015.