Meet our staff members

Prof Lizette Rabe
Departmental Chair

Prof Lizette Rabe

Lizette Rabe, chair of the Journalism Department at Stellenbosch University (SU), obtained a BA degree (with Philosophy, cum laude), an Honours in Journalism (cum laude), and the MA in Journalism (cum laude) from the SU. In 1994 she obtained her PhD from her alma mater. She began her journalism career at Naspers in 1979 and ended her career of more than twenty years in industry as editor of a Media24 magazine. She was appointed as Head of Department of the postgraduate Stellenbosch Journalism Department in 2001. She was the first woman to be appointed as editor of an Afrikaans publication at Naspers. She is author, co-author, or editor of several publications, and author of more than 40 peer reviewed articles. Rabe is a member of several professional associations, nationally and internationally. Her research interests are media history and cultural history. She was, amongst others, board member of SANEF and acted as convener and member of several journalistic judging panels. She is a founding member of the Salzburg Global Seminar’s Media Academy. Rabe is a recipient of the Rector’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and was on the first Rector’s List of the SU’s 25 top researchers across all faculties. She is also holder of the Chancellor’s Award and was honoured with the Stals Award for Journalism and Communication by the Suid-Afrikaanse Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns. As an activist for mental health awareness she founded the Ithemba Foundation, a non-profit organisation that focuses on awareness raising of depression and related diseases as biological diseases, with the Hope Hike and Hope Bike held annually in October, Mental Health Awareness Month.



  • Die oorsprong van die (Hollands-)Afrikaanse joernalistiek, die tydsgewrig, en Abraham Faure as pionier. Litnet Akademies, 18(3). Beskikbaar:


  • ’n Landboublad as (sosiale) barometer: Landbouweekblad as aanwyser van 100 jaar se landboujoernalistiek. Litnet Akademies, 2019.
  • Have your cake and eat it! Food, self and identity. SA Journal of Cultural History, 2019. 


  • Four South African “sunrises”, four cartoons, four eras and the cyclical nature of history, Historia, 63 (1).
  • ’n Gevallestudie:: ’n Mediahistoriografiese verkenning van ’n vroeë rubriek en ’n latere effekte teorie-uitspraak, TGW. 


  • Wo der Bauer die Wurst hängen hat – a cultural signifier: sausage making as tradition in the Philippi German descendant community, SA Journal for Cultural History.
  • Kroniek van ‘n mondigwording? ‘n Mediageskiedkundige herbesoek: Die WVK, Naspers en Afrikaanse joernalistiek 20 jaar later,


  • Grave matters: Cemeteries as cultural landscapes – the German cemetery in Philippi. SA Journal for Cultural History.
  • Huisgenoot as tydgenoot: ’n mediageskiedkundige kroniek van ’n tydskrif as “skrif” van sy tyd. Litnet Akademies.
  • Die belang van mediavryheid in Suid-Afrika: Tweehonderd jaar, twee gevallestudies, van die Magna Carta tot die Muilbandwet. Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe.


  • Rubriekmaak à la ryk, ryker, Rykie – Rykie van Reenen en enekele merkers vir hedendaagse blog-rubriekskrywers. Litnet Akademies Jaargang 12(2) ISSN 1995-5928.


  • Reflections on writing about writing media history, or, the mapping of certain paradigms and certain philosophies in researching a media historiographical project. Historia.
  • Arguing the case of the ‘Janus element’ in Journalism Education: Journalism History as essential element in Journalism curricula in developing democracies. Journal for Media Culture and Politics.
  • On microhistory, memoir, memory, and the “Minnie manuscripts”. SA Journal for Cultural History.
  • The future is built on the past: A call to include Journalism History in Journalism Curricula. Rhodes Journalism Review.
  • Transformation of journalism education and training curricula in post-1994 South Africa: The challenges (submitted to Communicatio; co-author with Bevelyn Dube).


  • The Past is Present: Lessons to be learnt. A Freethinker Journalist, Ideologies and Loyal Dissent. Communitas. Vol 17.
  • The Philippi German agricultural association – 125 years of organised agriculture on the Cape Flats. SA Journal of Cultural History. 26 (1).


  • Living History. Matriarch Julaiga Gomez and a flower dynasty. SA Journal for Cultural History 25.


  • Living History – the story of Adderley Street’s flower sellers. SA Journal for Cultural History
  • What is enough change? Rhodes Journalism Review No 30.


  • The “Bauernmission” and the ironies of colonialism: The religio-cultural legacy of the “Bauernsiedlung” Philippi. SA Journal for Cultural History.


  • Treu Deutsch Alle Wege! – Cultural Identity and the “German” community of Philippi. Journal for Cultural History.
  • Vryheid van die (Afrikaanse) spraak – Ryk, Ryker, Rykie. (Freedom of (Afrikaans) speech – Rich, Richer, Rykie. Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe (Journal for the Arts and Social Sciences).
  • A microhistorical record of “micromedia” a community media journalist and her medium. Communitas, 2008 (co-author).


  • History, Irony and a community – certain milestones in the congregations of the German immigrants to the Philippi Flats 1877-2007. SA Journal for Cultural History. Vol 21 (2).
  • An analogy between tabloids and the Wild, Wild West – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Gender and Media Diversity Journal. 


  • Rykie van Reenen – Journalist Extraordinaire. Communicatio, Vol 32(1).
  • The wedge that cracked the rock – a pioneering woman journalist. Communitas 11 Glass Ceiling, Concrete Ceiling. Rhodes Journalism Review. 


  • Manner of speech as expression of identity in the Lutheran Settler Community at Philippi. Journal for Cultural History Vol 19(2).


  • Women voices in the media of the Afrikaans language community – an historical perspective. Communitas.
  • Media education and training towards “en-gendered” newsrooms. Forum article. Ecquid Novi (25 (1).
  • The Media – A modern version of the African Drum. Editorial. Ecquid Novi 25 (1)
  • The Wind Makes Dust. Ecquid Novi 25 (1). 


  • Taal as identiteit – die ‘Duitse’ Afrikaanssprekende gemeenskap Philippi (Language as identity – the ‘German” Afrikaans speaking community Philippi). South African Journal for Cultural History, Vol 17 (II).
  • Gendersetting – the case for gender sensitive journalism (re)training – Rhodes Journalism Review.


  • Eve-olution – the status of women in South Africa’s media. Ecquid Novi 23 (1).
  • The Fourth Estate under siege, Ecquid Novi 23 (1).

Amongst others:

  • A luta continua – A history of media freedom in South Africa. AfricanSunMedia, Stellenbosch, 2020.
  • Om tot verhaal te kom. LAPA, Pretoria, 2018.
  • Quote / Unquote. Quotations on freedom of speech, journalism, the news media and a world of words. RAP/SUNMeDIA, Stellenbosch, 2016.
  • Hope – Consolation for the Inconsolable. Mzansimedia, Somerset-West, 2016.
  • Words of Comfort. Mzansimedia, Somerset West, 2016.
  • Konstante Revolusie – Media24, Naspers en ommekere. Editor and contributor. Cape Town, Tafelberg, 2015.
  • Die 95 Stellings van Lilith. eKhaya Random House Struik, 2012.
  • Hoop – ’n Troosboek. Contributors Prof A Delport, Dr M van Schalkwyk, C Louw, Prof L Rabe. Ed: L Rabe. Somerset West: Mzansi Media, 2012.
  • ’n Lewe met Woorde. Cape Town, Tafelberg, 2011.
  • Bete und Arbeite. The Philippi Germans and their story. Somerset West: Mzansi Media, 2010.
  • Ton van ’n Man – editor of the Festschrift for Ton Vosloo, chair of Naspers, on his 70th birthday. NB Publishers, Cape Town

Amongst others:

  • #Journalism4.0 – Commemorative publication: SU Journ Department, 2018
  • Forty Years Journalism Education and Training at Stellenbosch – Part One, 2018.
  • Forty Years Journalism Education and Training at Stellenbosch – Part Two, 2018.
  • Twintig dae in Desember: Naspers, Die Burger, Cillié en Verwoerd (Twenty Days in December: Naspers, Die Burger, Cillié and Verwoerd). Chapter in Konstante Revolusie – Media24, Naspers en ommekere. Editor and contributor. Cape Town, Tafelberg, 2015.
  • Artikels vir tydskrifte: Koffie en kopie – die meganika van die tydskrifartikel. In (reds R Scheepers en L Kleyn) Afrikaanse Skryfgids. (Reds R Scheepers & L Kleyn) Johannesburg: Penguin, 2012.
  • Afrikaanse Skryfgids (Chapter on features writing). Johannesburg, Oxford University Press, 2012.
  • God? Die oorsprong en uiteinde van alles (Chapter). Eds George Claassen & Frits Gaum. Cape Town, Tafelberg, 2012.
  • Rolle der deutschen evangelischen Auslandsarbeit im kolonialen südlichen Afrika bis in die 1920er Jahre (Chapter). EKD, Germany, 2011.
  • Stellenbosch, all but wrecked. Chapter in publication on Chris Brink, outgoing rector, Stellenbosch University: Anatomy of a reformer, SunMedia, 2007.
  • Chris Brink, unplugged. Chapter in publication on Chris Brink, outgoing rector, Stellenbosch University: Anatomy of a reformer, SunMedia, 2007.
  • Several other publications, not listed here.
  • Candy floss or solids? The Afrikaans media conundrum. The Media. June 2011.
  • Ryk ryker Rykie. Supplement to Media24 Saturday papers. 27 August, 2011
  • The Past is Present: lessons to be learnt. The Media. November 2011.
  • Dink nuut én anders. Die Burger. 8 October 2011.
  • Woorde wat verwond. BY Die Burger. 22 Oktober 2011.
  • On becoming a ‘public persona’, SANEF Editors’ Manual, 2008.
  • Global Media Literacy – Economic class and the Media – SA realities. Global Media Literacy Programme, Salzburg Academy, Salzburg Global Seminar, Austria. 28 Jul – 18 Aug, 2007 (invited Founding Partner of Salzburg Academy).
  • “Master class with the masters.” Workshop on feature writing. Language Centre, 15 and 18 June, 2007.
  • Media Freedom is Your Freedom. World Press Freedom Day mini-conference. Stellenbosch University, 3 May 2007.
  • Write to be read – lecture in series presented by Language Centre, Stellenbosch University, June 2007.
  • “Fit for purpose” – how to write for res annuals Writing course, organised by SU SRC, March 2007.
  • WOW school newspaper project organiser and presenter, Woordfees, through-out 2007.
  • TAEF (The African Editors’ Forum), 7 June 2007, CTICC, Cape Town
  • WEF (World Editors Forum), 3-6 June 2007, CTICC, Cape Town
  • SANEF, AGM/conference, 2 June 2007, CTICC, Cape Town
  • Sanef Regional Conference, Cape Town, 10 February (organiser and presenter), 2007.
  • Customer Publishing Seminar, CTICC, 15 February, Cape Town, 2007.
  • Goedgedacht Forum for Social Reflection, 22&23 February (upon invitation only), 2007.
  • “Moments of Nationhood – Moments of Enlightenment” – presentation during the doctoral defense of Kristin Skare Orgeret, September, University of Oslo, Norway, 2006.
  • The Glass Ceiling – status of senior women journalists in South African newsrooms. Sanef AGM, July, East London, 2006.
  • AGM and Conference, SANEF, East London, July 2006.
  • Journalism Education Colloquium, Grahamstown, August 2006.
  • Lees vs Kyk (Read vs Look), a discussion during the annual Stellenbosch Word Fest. Chair of the session. 11 March 2006.
  • Gender and the Media – Workshop for rural community workers, organised by GAP and SAMGI. 10 March 2006.
  • The tabloid challenge, invited discussant in the debate organised by the IAJ and InWent. 6 March 2006.
  • Exploring mass media opportunities – lecture at the Capacity Building Programme for Young Researchers, University of Stellenbosch. 21 June 2006.
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