Today, Word of Mouth Pictures announced in statement that actress, Regina Nesengani, popularly known as Vho-Masindi in Muvhango was conferred with a PhD degree by the University of South Africa (UNISA).
Her thesis done in TshiVenda was about women abuse through dialogue on drama books written by male writers. The contention of the thesis was that because most if not all the drama books were written by men, women are often portrayed in a very negative light and are hardly portrayed as intelligent creatures who can think and make decisions for themselves.
She says that she chose to do her thesis in TshiVenda because she wanted to emphasise to people that the language is also an official language in South Africa.
Born in Tshianzwane village, Limpopo the former teacher started teaching in 1975 after completing her Primary Teachers’ Course at Tshisimani Training College. The 65-year-old grandmother of 12 completed her masters degree while she worked as a primary school teacher is also a radio drama actor and has been in the acting industry for more than 30 years. Regina, whose role on Muvhango was her first on television juggled her masters studies with her Muvhango duties.
She says she got inspiration to study a PhD after listening to an interview of an old lady on SAFM who had just graduated with a PhD.
“I was very inspired by this lady . I said if she can do it so can I,” she said.
“I had a masters degree there was nothing stopping me from pursuing a PhD.”
She adds that her topic was inspired by the prevalence of gender-based violence (GBV) in her community while she was still studying for her masters.
“I realized that women were not happy in their homes. I was also touched by many stories of women who were abused by their partners. I was shocked that this was happening in 2020 with all the awareness and education on GBV.”
“After her masters she researched more on the topic of GBV and found shocking discoveries. Dating back from the early 70s. I discovered women that were abused in the Bible. I was shocked to learn that even women abused each other. I then made a proposal to my supervisor around the topic and I got approval to proceed with the topic. Regina says she hopes her study will add to the body of literature and knowledge on GBV issues.
SABC in partnership with Word of Mouth Pictures will celebrate this milestone with a graduation celebration party. Details will follow soon.