Mieke Struwig


Mieke Struwig is a NRF Innovation Postdoctoral Fellow at the Africa Open Institute for Music, Research and Innovation. She completed her PhD studies in March 2024 under the guidance of Dr Carina Venter and Prof. Stephanus Muller with a dissertation considering the intellectual history of institutionalised music studies in 20th-century South Africa 

Mieke holds a BMus: Performing Arts (Cum Laude) degree from Nelson Mandela University, where she specialised in clarinet performance. Here she received the Nelson Mandela University Council Award for Best First Degree in the Faculty of Arts as well as Vice-Chancellor’s Medal for the best First-Degree Graduate in the university in 2019. After a move to Stellenbosch University, she completed her MMus: Musicology (Cum Laude) in 2020 under the guidance of Dr Carina Venter, with a thesis investigating the decolonisation of the BMus curricula of four South African tertiary music departments. Mieke has lectured on World Music and Research Methodology (Archival Research) at Stellenbosch University. She is also the current secretary of the South African Society for Research in Music (SASRIM), as well as a member of the Exco. 


Mieke is currently furthering her research into the intellectual history of institutionalised music studies in South Africa. This research is energised by various recent efforts to understand the influence of South Africa’s troubled colonial and apartheid history on the shaping of academic disciplines and discourses. In particular, Mieke is concerned with the establishment and consolidation of the discipline, the work of individuals instrumental in this project, the various ideologies at play in institutions such as music departments as well as the ways in which the discipline has responded to political transitions and paradigm shifts in scholarship. It is envisioned that this systematic overview of institutionalised music studies in South Africa will assist scholars in their efforts to grapple with the pasts, present and futures of the discipline. Mieke’s broader research interests include decolonial thought, intellectual and institutional histories and their relation to discourses of apartheid and colonialism as well as archival research. 

  • 2024 Writing Against the Chain Transmission of Fear: Reflections on Institutionalised Ethics’, Qualitative Research Journal, forthcoming. 
  • 2024 Review of Sound Fragments: From Field Recording to African Electronic Stories by Noel Lobley. SAMUS: South African Music Studies 42/43, forthcoming. 
  • 2020 ‘Surveying Post-Apartheid Curricular Change at Four South African Tertiary Music Departments. SAMUS: South African Music Studies, 40 (1), 419-462.