Deevia Bhana

Professor Deevia Bhana



Deevia Bhana holds the DSI/NRF South African Research Chair in Gender and Childhood Sexuality. Her research is transdisciplinary, drawing on feminist and new materialist theories to investigate the gendered sexual cultures of children and young people, their experience of violence and the ways in which education and other institutions can contribute to enhancing their sexual well-being, safety, and gender equality. She has authored 12 books and contributed to over 150 book chapters and peer-reviewed articles. Her most recent authored work is Girls and the Negotiation of Porn in South Africa: Power, Play, and Sexuality (Routledge, 2023). She has also co-edited two recent books: Gendered and Sexual Norms in Global South Early Childhood Education: Understanding Normative Discourses in Post-Colonial Contexts (Routledge, 2024) and Sex and Sexualities, Sexual Health and Justice: Perspectives from Southern Africa (Routledge, 2023). Her work is published in prestigious journals such as AIDS Education & Prevention, British Educational Research Journal, British Journal of Sociology of Education, Gender & Education, International Journal of Educational Development, International Journal of Educational Research, International Journal of Inclusive Education, Journal of Southern African Studies, Men and Masculinities, Sexualities, Social Science and Medicine, Youth Studies.

Deevia Bhana serves as the Co-Chair of RINGS (International Research Association of Institutions of Advanced Gender Studies), a global association consisting of 75 research institutions dedicated to gender and feminist research. She holds several editorial leadership roles and is one of the Chief Editors of the journal Children and Society, Pedagogy, Culture and Society, while also serving as an Associate Editor of Health Education Journal. She is a member of the Board of Directors of CIES (Comparative and International Education Society).

She was awarded the Medal for Social Sciences and Humanities from the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) and Universities South Africa (USAf) in 2022. She holds the position of Fellow at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and is an elected member of the Academy of Science South Africa (ASSAF).

Deevia Bhana is a NRF B1 rated researcher (


Recent Supervision (2018)

Science Engagement

A record of contribution to the public’s understanding of gender and childhood sexuality:

Upcoming Events

15-16 Dec 2022 2nd International Conference on Sustainable Development Goals & Gender Perspective

Keynote Address

2nd International Conference on Sustainable Development Goals & Gender Perspective (ICSDGAGP2022) (Online mode)

Dates: 15-16 December 2022

Faculty coordinators: Dr. Vasundhara Mahajan & Dr. Anandita Chowdhury, DoEE SVNIT Surat.

Organized by: Department of Electrical Engineering, Sardar Vallabhbhai National Institute of Technology (SVNIT), Surat, Gujarat – 395007, India.

Conference website:

Institute website:

Brochure: Download

26 -28 Oct 2022 Decolonising Feminisms.

The International Research Association of Institutions of Advanced Gender Studies (RINGS) Conference and Annual Meeting 2022

Topic: Decolonising Feminisms. Hosted by UKZN, Durban


11 Oct 2022 Webinar: African cities: what place for the youth?

Date: 11 October

Webinar African cities: what place for the youth?

Topic: “Challenging Cities: Young Men, Masculinity and Violence”

The programme is available using the link below: 

20-21 Sep 2022 REPRODUCTION IN AFRICA New Horizons

This event is the first of five events that takes place annually, once in each of the 5 countries that are part of the Re-imagining Reproduction: Making babies, making kin and citizens in Africa project. The keynote speakers will discuss the idea of whether there is a need to re-imagine scholarship on reproduction in Africa, what this might look like and/or what this might achieve.

Future Africa. Hosted by REPRODUCTION IN AFRICA New Horizons


31 Aug 2022. 15h00-17h30 Gender, Sexuality and Sexual Health in Southern Africa

The University of Pretoria, in collaboration with the University of KwaZulu-Natal and the Centre for Social Research in Health (CSRH), cordially invites you to the launch of Gender, Sexuality and Sexual Health in Southern Africa.

Sex, sexuality and sexual health are often viewed through a narrowly biomedical lens. This ignores the fact that they are profoundly social and historical in character. Recent work in Southern Africa (and beyond) has sought to challenge this perspective, asking important questions about how to move beyond notions of damage and risk in relation to sex, sexuality and health, to a focus on recognition, rights, respect and pleasure.

Building on the contributions in the recently published book – Sex, Sexuality and Sexual Health in Southern Africa – and the experiences of seminar participants, this event will take the lid off these and related concerns.

This event will be of special interest to scholars, health professionals, community workers and activists seeking new ways of understanding and engaging with old issues

Date: 31 August 2022
Time: 15h00 – 17h30
Venues: Future Africa Auditorium, Hillcrest Campus and Online


25 Aug 2022. 09h00 Gender-Based Violence in Institutions of Higher Learning

Expert Roundtable on Gender-Based Violence in Institutions of Higher Learning: Plenary Panel I 10:30 – 12:00: Exploring the concept and nature of GBV, causes and influencing factors in institutions of higher learning A project of the Law Trust Chair in Social Justice (Professor Thuli Madonsela), Law Faculty, Stellenbosch University

25 August 2022 09:00 SAST at STIAS, Stellenbosch University



14 Jul 2022 Comprehensive Sexuality Education and Young Children: Needed and Denied

I SexAFIN International Virtual Conference “(Re)thinking about comprehensive sexuality education from a child-centered and gendered perspective”.  2nd Conference day: Strategies of CSE.

Topic: Comprehensive Sexuality Education and Young Children: Needed and Denied. 

Programa_I SexAFIN International Virtual Conference FINAL

20 Jun 2022. 14h00 Teenage girls and the entanglement with online porn

British Sociological Association New Materialisms study group seminar. 

Topic: ‘Teenage girls and the entanglement with online porn: A new feminist materialist perspective’ 

PsySSA 2022 Workshop Series: Workshop 1 – Sexual consent in young adults: A moment or a movement? 

Topic: Sexual Consent: Sex, Power and Young People