Before joining the Africa Institute in Sharjah in 2022, Professor Lalu was a founding director of the Centre for Humanities Research (CHR) at the University of the Western Cape in South Africa (2008–2019). Lalu is a board member of the International Consortium of Humanities Centres and Institutes, Advisory Board Member of the Käte Hamburger Kolleg in Munich, a juror of Akademie Schloss Solitude and former chairperson of the Handspring Trust for Puppetry in Education.

Lalu has published widely in academic journals on historical discourse and the study of the humanities and is a regular contributor of public opinion pieces on the arts and humanities. His articles have appeared in History and Theory, Journal of Southern African Studies, Journal of Asian, African and Middle Eastern Studies, Critical Times, Kronos: Southern African Histories, Economic and Political Weekly, and the South African Historical Journal. His first book, The Deaths of Hintsa: Post-apartheid South Africa and the Shape of Recurring Pasts (HSRC Press, 2009) was included in the Alan Paton longlist in 2010. He has co-edited, with Gary Minkley and Maurits Bever Donker, Remains of the Social: Desiring the Post-apartheid (Wits University Press, 2017).

He was awarded a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship to read for his PhD at the University of Minnesota, US.
Lalu completed his undergraduate, honours and master’s degrees at the University of KwaZulu-Natal/South Africa and the University of the Western Cape/South Africa.

SAF participation:
March Meeting 2022