Research

My broad interests are in the interdisciplinary fields of African studies and migration studies, with a particular focus on Southern Africa, contemporary African mobilities and histories of African diasporas.  One strand of my work is on citizenship and the postcolonial state in Africa, particularly in relation to the local state and urban governance.  Another strand relates to histories of nationalism and liberation wars, approached through a transnational lens.  Recently I have been exploring 'decolonial' approaches to African historic collections in British msueums, taking forward older interests in 'heritage' in Africa. These interests cross the boundaries of historical/cultural, political and development geography.

Current research projects includes:

Migrants on the margins (RGS/IBG, ESRC, AHRC and GCRF 2016-19).  A series of interlinked projects on mobility, citizenship and governance in 4 African and Asian cities - Harare, Hargeisa, Colombo, Dhaka. I am leading the Harare case study in partnership with DEGI in Zimbabwe, directed by Dr Kudzai Chatiza  The project is a collaboration between Sussex, SOAS and Durham, with Prof Mike Collyer as PI.

Transnational histories of exile and solidarity during Southern Africa's liberation wars.  This includes an ESRC-funded study of Zimbabweans in  Britain from 1965 (2013-6), and on-going research in collaboration with Prof Jocelyn Alexander (University of Oxford) on ZIPRA history, including research on guerrillas experiences in the Soviet Union and of liberation movement training camps in Angola.

South coast cosmopolitanisms: connections and diversities (RDF 2016-7).  This study investigates the historic African collections of four Sussex and Kent museums, inspired by debates over the 'decolonization' of British public institutions. 

Previous projects include:

Narratives and legacies of detention (Nuffield Foundation, 2009).  A study of experiences of immigration detention in Britain, exploring the impact of confinement on ideas about notions of self and other, justice, belonging and citizenship.

The new Zimbabwe diaspora: inclusion and exclusion in Britain (ESRC 2004-5). An exploration of integration, work and identity, with a particular focus on irregular work and employment in the care sector. 

Landscape and memory in the Zambezi borderlands (British Academy 2000-1).  A study of the cultural politics of the Zambezi borderlands focussed on the debates over landscape and memory.

Forced migration in southern Africa: the local politics of incorporation and exclusion (ESRC and Leverhulme Trust 1994-7).  A study of conflict, authoritarianism, nationalism and ethnicity in Zimbabwe and Mozambique, with a particular focus on legacies of violence.

I would welcome proposals for doctoral study in any of the following broad areas:

* Contemporary African politico-cultural issues, particularly Southern Africa

* Mobility, displacement, and African transnational connections

* Conflict and borderlands, violence and its legacies in African contexts

* Citizenship and governance of urban growth, land and resources in African contexts

* Africans diasporas, and Africans in Britain