Professor Saul Dubow

Professor of African History

Location Arts Two 3.13


Telephone: +44 (0)20 7882 5727

I grew up in South Africa and studied at the universities of Cape Town and Oxford before joining Sussex University.  I joined Queen Mary in 2013.

My teaching and research concentrates on the history of modern South Africa from the early-nineteenth century to the present. I have published widely on the development of racial segregation and apartheid in all its aspects: political, ideological, intellectual and institutional.


Arising out of my South African-based research, I have developed special interests with broader horizons and comparative dimensions. These include

  • Racial segregation and apartheid
  • The history of race, eugenics, and ethnicity
  • Imperialism and national identity
  • Colonial science and knowledge
  • Prehistory, paleontology
  • Human rights and international institutions
  • Modern Africa history
  • Global intellectual history

I am currently completing a New History of Apartheid for Oxford University Press and a reader on Colonial Knowledges for Ashgate. I have recently published a short history of Human Rights in South Africa

Current PhD Students

  • Alycen Mitchell – Sotheby’s and Christie’s rise to international pre-eminence 1956-2006

Undergraduate teaching

Postgraduate supervision 

I welcome applications from candidates wishing to undertake doctoral research in the following areas:

  • South African history
  • Colonial intellectual history
  • The ideology of race
  • Human rights
  • Colonial science and knowledge
  • The British Commonwealth



Apartheid 1948-1994 (Oxford University Press, 2014)

South Africa’s Struggle for Human Rights (2012)

A Commonwealth of Knowledge. Science, Sensibility and White South Africa , 1820-2000 (Oxford University Press, 2006)

The African National Congress (2000)

Scientific Racism in Modern South Africa (Cambridge University Press,1995)

Racial Segregation and the Origins of Apartheid in Twentieth Century South Africa, 1919-36 (Macmillan, 1989)


Edited collections

Science and Society in Southern Africa (Manchester, 2000)

South Africa's 1940s: Worlds of Possibilities (Double Storey, 2005)

a new edition of W.Sachs' Black Hamlet, with Jacqueline Rose (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996)

Segregation and Apartheid in Twentieth-Century South Africa, with William Beinart (Routledge,1995)

Charles Bloomberg's Christian-Nationalism and the Development of the Afrikaner Broederbond, 1918-48 Macmillan, 1990).

Recent journal publications and book chapters:

Membership of professional associations or societies

African Studies Association of the United Kingdom

Editorial Positions

Past chair of the Journal of Southern African Studies and currently member of its editorial board

Appearances in the media

I have made appearances on British, South African, and Australian radio and television. These include:

-         Nightwaves BBC Radio 3

-         In Our Time BBC Radio 4

-         BBC World Service

-        Today BBC Radio 4