Zindaba Dunduzu Chisiza

Zindaba Dunduzu Chisiza

PhD Graduand

Summary: I recently completed my PhD in Theatre Studies. I specialise in Theatre for Development, theatre with young people, masculinities and arts-based HIV prevention.

Location: School of English

MA in International Performance Research, University of Warwick
MA in Theatre Studies, University of Amsterdam
BA in Drama, University of Malawi

Zindaba Chisiza is a Dorothie Hewlett Scholarship funded PhD student. 

Deadly Masculinities: Towards a Theatrical Toolbox For Exploring Identity and HIV with Young Malawian Men

My doctoral research examined the effectiveness of a range of participatory theatre-based methods as tools for enabling young men to examine and interrogate dangerous formulations of masculinity. My hypothesis was that the current applications of Theatre for Development in Malawi are inadequate for the purpose of meaningfully engaging with young men in order to help them stay sexually safe and to examine their understandings of Malawian masculinities. Therefore, my study primarily set out to investigate what theatre forms can be impactful for engaging with young men to explore these masculinities that increase their, and their partners, HIV risk and to enable them to define themselves as male in alternative ways that mitigate high-risk sexual behaviours and violence against women. 


Professor Jane Plastow

Research Interests

  • Theatre for Development (TfD)
  • African Masculinities and HIV/AIDS
  • Gender politics in HIV/AIDS
  • Performance and Cultural Studies
  • Theories of Public Sphere and Counterpublics  
  • Health and Development Communication


Chisiza, Z. (2017), 'Dialogical Theatre: Reconsidering the Role of Theatre for Development for Malaria Prevention in Malawi' in Applied Theatre: Performing Health and Wellbeing, eds. Veronica Baxter and Katherine Low, London: Bloomsbury, Methuen, pp. 111-113. 

Chisiza, Z. (2017), 'The Problem with Theatre for Development in Contemporary Malawi', Leeds Centre for African Studies Bulletin (2016/17), 78, pp. 61-78. 

Chisiza, Z. (2017), 'In Search of Theatre for Development in Malawi: A Modern History, Critical Stages: Special issue on Contemporary African Drama and Theatre, The webjournal for the International Association of Theatre Critics, 15 (Forthcoming).

Chisiza, Z. (2017), 'Participatory Theatre as a Practice as Research Tool for Engaging with Young Men to Interrogate Masculinity and HIV in Malawi', PARtake: Journal of Performance as Research, 1.2 (Forthcoming).

Chisiza, Z. and Bonsall, A. (2017), 'The Donor Dependency Syndrome: The Politics of Theatre Funding Structures in Malawi' Platform: Journal of Theatre and Performing Arts, 10.2. (Forthcoming).


Dorothie Hewlett Scholarship, School of English, University of Leeds, 2014-17
Erasmus Mundus Scholarship for MA International Performance Research, University of Warwick 2010-11

Work and Teaching Experience

Lecturer in Drama, Department of Fine and Performing Arts, University of Malawi, 2012-Present 
Head of Drama, Department of Fine and Performing Arts, University of Malawi, Jan 2014-Apr 2014

Courses Taught

Department of Fine and Performing Arts, University of Malawi, Chancellor College 

  • DRA 414 Performance and Cultural Studies, 2013/14
  • DRA 415 Directing, 2013/14
  • DRA 414 Acting, 2013/14
  • DRA 315 Acting, 2012/13
  • DRA 211 Introduction to African Theatre, 2012/13 & 2013/14
  • DRA 222 Introduction to European Theatre, 2012/13