Robert NyamushoshoRobert Nyamushosho
Ph.D., University of Capetown 2021

Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropology, Queens College-CUNY

Research Associate, University of Johannesburg & University of Cape Town

Fellow, TheMuseumsLab (2023)


312A Powdermaker Hall
(718) 997-5529

                                                                      Fax: (718) 997-2885

     Select Publications                                                            Academic Profiles on:, Google Scholar, ResearchGate

I am an anthropological archaeologist whose research, and teaching are centred on re-imagining Africa’s place, and its diaspora in world prehistory. My primary area of interest is sub-Saharan Africa, with an active research program that focuses on understanding the early history of ancient civilizations such as Great Zimbabwe, Nyanga, and Chumnungwa.
My research encompasses diverse topics, such as the anthropology of technology, the formation of early states, urbanism, the emergence of inequality, the interplay between landscapes and past societies, interpretation, and representation of heritage, decoloniality, concept revision, and the politics of knowledge production. Additionally, I explore Africa's contributions to other world civilizations through trans-Atlantic and Indian Ocean-based networks, challenging previous archaeological studies that perpetuated stereotypes of precolonial Africa as underdeveloped and isolated.
I strongly believe in the reciprocal relationship between research and teaching, with each informing and enriching the other. My research approach is both collections-based and field-based. My laboratory research revolves around working with existing collections and asking new questions. I apply materials analysis in conjunction with anthropological, historical, and quantitative interdisciplinary methods to generate new knowledge. In the field, my curriculum primarily focuses on archaeological surveys and excavations, complemented by ethnographic studies. My work has gained international recognition, including being a co-winner of the Antiquity Best Paper of the Year 2019 award for exceptional contributions to the field of archaeology.

Select Publications

Mathoho, E, N, Nyamushosho, R, T, Chirikure, S. Archaeometallurgical Explorations of Bloomery Iron Smelting at Mutoti 2, an Early Iron Age Site in Venda, Northern South Africa. Metals. 2023; 13(2):269.

Nyamushosho, R, T, Chirikure, S, Sitas, A, & Maṱhoho, E, N, 2022. Modelling Land Use in The Gold Belt Territories of Iron Age Southern Zambezia. Land 11, 1425.

Scholfield, J, Nyamushosho, R, T, Mushangwe, C, & Chirikure, S. 2022. Mtanye revisited: New insights into the Middle Iron Age of southern Zambezia. Azania Archaeological Research in Africa 57:3, 335-364.

Maṱhoho, E, N, Chirikure, S, & Nyamushosho, R, T. 2022. Board games and social life in Iron Age southern Africa. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology. 66, 101418.

Moffett, A, J, Nyamushosho, R, T, Bandama, F, and Chirikure, S. 2021. Stringing together cowrie shells in the African archaeological record with special reference to southern Africa. Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory

Nyamushosho, R, T, Chipangura, N, Pasipanodya, T.B, Bandama, F, Chirikure, S, &, Manyanga, M. 2021. Nyanga pottery and the Manyika ethnohistory: towards a decolonised archaeology of the Nyanga agricultural complex. Heliyon-Elsevier 7: 3, e06609

Nyamushosho, R.T, & Chirikure, S. 2020. Archaeological implications of ethnographically grounded functional study of pottery from Nyanga, Zimbabwe. Quaternary International. 555: 150–164.

Chipangura. N, Nyamushosho, R. T, & Pasipanodya, T, B. 2019. Living site, living values: the Matendera festival as practice in community conservation and presentation. International Journal of Intangible Heritage 14,16-31.

Nyamushosho, R.T, Chirikure, S., Bandama, F., Manyanga, M, & Mukwende, T. 2018. Are drylands marginal? The case study of Mananzve, Shashi region, southwestern Zimbabwe. Azania Archaeological Research in Africa. 53:4, 439-476.

Mukwende, T, Bandama, F, Chirikure, S, & Nyamushosho, R, T. 2018. The chronology, craft production and economy of the Butua capital of Khami, southwestern Zimbabwe, Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa. 53:4, 477-506.

Chirikure S, Nyamushosho, R, Bandama, F, Dandara, C. 2018. Elites and commoners at Great Zimbabwe: archaeological and ethnographic insights on social power. Antiquity 92, 364, 1056–1075. https://doi:10.15184/aqy.2018.137

Chirikure, S., Mukwende, T., Moffett, A.J., Nyamushosho, R.T., Bandama, F., & House, M., 2017. No big brother here: heterarchy, Shona political succession and the relationship between great Zimbabwe and Khami, southern Africa. Cambridge. Archaeological Journal. 28: 1, 45-66. https://doi:10.1017/S0959774317000555

Nyamushosho, R T. 2017. Aspects of consumption and symbolism: A ceramic ethnoarchaeological study of ritual vessels among the Saunyama of north-eastern Zimbabwe. In Manyanga, M & Chirikure, S (eds), Archives, Objects and Landscapes. Multidisciplinary approaches to Decolonised Zimbabwean Pasts. Langaa Publishers

Chirikure, S., Nyamushosho, R T., Chimhundu, H.H., Dandara, C., Pamburai, H.H. & Manyanga, M. 2017. Concept and knowledge revision in the post-colony: mukwerera, the practice of asking for rain amongst the Shona of southern Africa. In Manyanga, M & Chirikure, S (eds), Archives, Objects and Landscapes. Multidisciplinary approaches to Decolonised Zimbabwean Pasts. Langaa Publishers.

Chirikure, S., Bandama, F., Pollard, F, Fredriksen, P, D, Mahachi, G, Manyanga, M, House, M Moffett, A.J, Mukwende, T., &, Nyamushosho, R.T. 2015. Mapela Hill: The early birth of southern Africa’s first great civilisation. Current World Archaeology.73: 20-24

Chipangura, N & Nyamushosho, R.T. 2014. Embracing our cultural heritage as our own property. Manica Post 16-22 May 2014

Research Focus:
•    Early state formation, and urbanism
•    Anthropology of technology
•    Precolonial -Saharan Africa
•    Trans-Atlantic and Indian Ocean-based circulatory systems
•    Entanglements between landscapes and past societies
•    Heritage interpretation and representation
•    Decoloniality, and politics of knowledge production

Courses Taught:
  • Archaeology of Africa (ANT 249)