RAI RESEARCH SEMINAR Wednesday 13 June 5.30p.m.

Early Modern Zimbabwean Art History in British Archives
Dr Jonathan Zilberg, The Asia Foundation

There is a surprising amount of data on the early history of modern art in Zimbabwe to be found in archives in the UK. For instance, in the Central Saint Martins (UAL) and the United Society for the Propagation of the Gospel (USPG) records in London, and in the Bodleian in Oxford, there are
detailed records of Cyrene mission art history in the late 1930´s through the 1950´s. For the later period, from the late 1950´s through the early 1970´s, there is substantial material on the history of Neo-German African Expressionism and Shona sculpture in the RAI library in the British Museum. In addition to the information to be found in these repositories, there are materials in the Tate, the National Archives, the Ashmolean and the Dean Museum, in the Royal Collection in Windsor as well as in many private collections. There is in all this then a remarkable depth of information concerning the life histories and consequence of the work of two key European enablers in modern Zimbabwean art history, namely Canon Edward Paterson (1895-1974) and Frank McEwen, O.B.E
(1907-1994). In this seminar I will discuss these materials and how these two enablers, the artists and their art fit into the larger story of modern British and French art history.

This event is free, but tickets must be booked. To book tickets please go to

Location : Royal Anthropological Institute
50 Fitzroy Street
United Kingdom


BZS Research Day Saturday 16 June 2018

Our  research day is a dynamic overview of research into Zimbabwe and is but once a year looking at fascinating current developments. This year we have called the programme:
Youth and Experience – Generation to Generation in Zimbabwe and the Diaspora `

Saturday 16 June 2018, 9.00am – 5.30pm (doors open from 8.30am)St. Antony’s College, Nissan Theatre, 62 Woodstock Road, Oxford, OX2 6JF
In partnership with the Oxford African Studies Centre. Here is the latest update
and book tickets online 




Join our “Whats App” group

If you are a paid up member you can join our  BZS Whats App discussion group. This App is available on any phone but also available for desk top access. This we hope will keep members rapidly in touch with developments,and  national activities in the Uk and Zimbabwe .  Please be aware that members with a wide variety of views may target this group and that it does not represent the opinions of the Britain Zimbabwe Society but only of the named individuals. Please avoid defamatory comments and material that has no intellectual or promotional merit. You may be deleted from the group without warning if you have not kept up to date with your membership.

Please send your real name with your contact number to Rori Masiyane
07763 305905. Please double check you have the correct number before you send.
If you want to avoid being irritated by constant pings to your phone these audible notifications can be switched off on your hand set. You can also choose your own ping sound for BZS notifications so as not to confuse them with other such events.

If you want to publish long well researched essays or opinions these are better expressed through our newsletter published four times a year and materials can be submitted to the editor


BZS AGM 21 October 2017

Thanks to all our speakers for delivering a lively debate at this year’s AGM 2017

Our Chair, Dr Knox Chitiyo 




Pelagia Nyamayaro, Phoenix Healthcare and Recruitment and Brunel University





Conrad Mwanza, Publisher Zimbabweans Abroad       Pat Brickhill, BZS Secretary

Inside/Outside – Thinking about Zimbabwe
A Britain Zimbabwe Society discussion to explore ways in which people in Zimbabwe think about the diaspora and ways in which the diaspora think about Zimbabwe

Conrad Mwanza, Zimbabwe Achievers Awards
Pat Brickhill, Britain Zimbabwe Society
Patricia Chinyoka, Care for Someone:Diversity in the Community
 Inside Outside Programme for  information about the  programme.  Download the latest updated BZS_AGM2017_revised  programme information on the speakers


Welcome to the Britain Zimbabwe Society

This is the developing word press site for the Britain Zimbabwe Society. The Britain Zimbabwe Society (BZS) was established after Zimbabwe’s Independence in 1980 to share information, promote friendship and facilitate networking between the two countries.

In addition BZS organises a BZS Research Day annually in June, to highlight research by academics on Zimbabwe both in that country and in the Diaspora. A Review with details of newly published books, economic reviews and articles of general interest, is published three times a year. Membership of the organisation provides access to BZS Information which promotes news and debate on the current situation in Zimbabwe and events linked to Zimbabwe. For further details on joining the BZS please consult the information on membership provided elsewhere on this site.


Latest Update: BZS Research Day programme Oxford University 17 June 2017

Download the BZS_RD17_programme_updated 12Jun17   –  Also please download the biographies as we have an impressive line up on saturday. BZS RD17_speaker bios_promotional

Still a few days to register to attend on Eventbrite:https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/staying-alive-in-zimbabwe-tickets-33048520013 and you can also register on the day.

A reminder that the Research Day programme includes a book launch by Marieke Clarke and our guest speaker Pathisa Nyathi, of their biography of Welshman Mabhena, published in Zimbabwe last year and now available in the UK through African Books Collective. Marieke and Pathisa will be signing copies and the book will be on sale from the bookstall during the refreshment and lunch breaks on Saturday.

“Welshman Hadane Mabhena: A voice for Matabeleland” was written by Marieke Faber Clarke with Pathisa Nyathi and published by Amagugu Publishers, Bulawayo, September 2016. The book is distributed in the UK by African Books Collective.

Welshman Mabhena was an iconic figure in  the Zimbabwean nationalist struggle. Of noble origin, he faced humiliation, threats to his life,detention and imprisonment under appalling conditions and for many years. But he remained loyal to the ideals of the nationalist struggle that he sacrificed
precious time to achieve. Elected Secretary-General of ZAPU in 1985,  Welshman Mabhena was one of the architects of the Unity Accord of 1987. He was elected Deputy Speaker of Parliament and became ZANU-PF Matabeleland North Provincial Chairman. In 1992 he was made Governor of Matabeleland North. His tenure of office was not renewed by the head of state and Welshman Mabhena was dismissed from
the role of Governor in 2000. He died at home in 2010 and is buried in Bulawayo.