Johan Smuts (-2015) was a professor and researcher in Afrikaans literature.
He spent number of years as a teacher of Afrikaans, working for the Woordeboek van die Afrikaanse Taal and the Faculty of Education at the University of Stellenbosch, before being appointed as a lecturer in the Departement Afrikaans en Nederlands ("Department of Afrikaans and Dutch department at the university in 1971. In 1986 he was made professor, serving as chair of the Department from 1989 to 1991, and retiring in 1994. He played an important role as a member and, for a while chairman, of the literary commission of the Suid-Afrikaanse Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns (1990 to 2007) and as a reader for a number of publishing houses.
An avid researcher, he wrote extensively on Afrikaans prose and drama. Of particular importance for theatre studies have been his many "dramakronieke" ("drama chronicles") in the Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe (The Journal of Humanities) and a contribution on the Afrikaans drama in Die Afrikaanse literatuur sedert sestig (1980), a literary history edited by T.T. Cloete. A selection of his many reviews have been published in the book Burgerband (1985).
With his wife and colleague, Ria Smuts, he published a number of collections of short stories and dramas for school use.
In 2003 he was the recipient of the Gustav Preller-prize for literature and literary criticism from the Suid-Afrikaanse Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns ontvang.