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Deirdre Pretorius

Associate Professor in the Graphic Design Department, University of Johannesburg

Prof Deirdre Pretorius is an Associate Professor at the University of Johannesburg in the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture. Her research focus is on the intersections of representation, identities and ideologies in contemporary and historical graphic design and visual culture in South(ern) Africa.


  • –present
    Associate Professor in the Graphic Design Department, University of Johannesburg


  • 2012 
    University of Johannesburg, D Litt et Phil (Historical Studies)


  • 2021
    Teaching Gender and Design in Collaboration with WAM, In Seen, Heard and Valued. WAM Celebrates 40 Years of the Standard Bank Art Collection. Edited by Julia Charlton et al
  • 2021
    President, Preacher and Populist: ANC, DA and EFF Leader Posters of the 2019 South African Elections, Critical Arts
  • 2020
    Liberation, Nation and Salvation: South African Political Party Logos of the 2019 General Election, Lessons to Learn? Past Design Experiences and Contemporary Design Practices. Proceedings of the ICDHS 12th International Conference on Design History and Design Studies
  • 2019
    SLUIT NOU AAN! South African Union Defence Force recruitment posters from the Second World War, South African Historical Journal
  • 2017
    Object Biographies as a method for Communication Design students to construct knowledge in the Design Studies classroom, Proceedings from the Design Education Forum of South Africa Conference, #Decolonise! Design educators reflecting on the call for the decolonisation of education
  • 2016
    Does Southern African Design History Exist? , In Designing Worlds: National Design Histories in an Age of Globalization. Edited by Kjetil Fallan and Grace Lees-Maffei
  • 2016
    Propaganda tricks – Good and Bad: The Posters of the Mobile Visual Instruction & Propaganda Section of the South African Union Defence Force from January to July 1945, South African Historical Journal
  • 2015
    Graphic Design in South Africa: A Post-Colonial Perspective, Journal of Design History
  • 2013
    The visual representation of masculinities in Huisgenoot Tempo magazine, Communicatio: South African Journal for Communication Theory and Research
  • 2012
    The Printed Propaganda of the Communist Party of South Africa 1921-1950, Proceedings from the Design History Society Annual Conference, Design Activism and Social Change
  • 2009
    Visually Constructing Socialist Identity in 20th Century South Africa: A Comparison of Communist Party of South Africa Cartoons from the 1930s and Congress of South Africa Trade Union Posters from the 1980s, in Imaging Ourselves: Visual Identities in Representation
  • 2008
    Countering stereotypes: the representation of Africans in Communist Party of South Africa cartoons 1930-1936, Image and Text
  • 2007
    Amapasi Asiwafuni! / To hell with pass laws! Class, race and gender identities in the anti-pass laws cartoons published in Umsebenzi / South African Worker 1933-1936, Image and Text


Member AICA (International Association of Art Critics)