Ilana van Wyk
Ilana van Wyk is an anthropologist. She studied at the University of Pretoria, at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London and at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). She completed her PhD at SOAS in 2007 and was a teaching- and postdoctoral fellow at the LSE. Ilana joined HUMA in 2011 after a short stint as a National Research Foundation postdoctoral fellow at the University of Cape Town. She has won various awards and research grants, among them the Royal Anthropological Institution’s Satusoma award, a Vice-Chancellor’s award from UCT, a Wennergren research grant and a grant from the British Economic and Social Research council. Her current research focuses on precolonial currency exchange and financial instruments at the Cape of Good Hope. She has also worked on a 14 month project on the social economics of spectacular matric balls on the Cape Flats. Her previous research looked at the intersections between religion and money; she worked on new forms of Christianity, in particular prosperity gospel and Pentecostal Charismatic Churches, and on the South African Lottery. The former interest culminated in the publication of a monograph called The Universal Church of the Kingdom of God in South Africa: A church of strangers (Cambridge Press 2014) while she’s currently in the process of writing a book on the Lottery.