Mshai Mwangola

Mshai holds a PhD in Performance Studies from Northwestern University (USA). Her thesis on Kenya’s “Uhuru Generation”, titled ‘Performing Our Stories, Performing OurSelves’, approaches the idea of a generational historical mission through the re-creation, invocation and facilitation of performance as a site of individual and communal reflection. Prior to this, she obtained an MCA (Masters of Creative Arts) from the School of Studies in the Creative Arts, University of Melbourne (Australia) and a Bachelor of Education (Hons) from Kenyatta University (Kenya).

Mshaï's pedagogy, research and creative work is grounded in understanding performance as both the process and product of meaning-making.

Research Interests

• Orature / Performance as Discourse
• Generational Discourses
• Leadership
• Civil Society
• Culture and the Arts
• Africana Education


Research: Publications


“Youth and Politics: Generational Mission.” Youth Research Compendium. Nairobi: Institute of Economic Affairs (Kenya). 225 – 246.
“She Danced to the Beat of a Different Drummer.” Pambazuka News Issue 549 – Tribute to WambuiOtienoMbugua -
“Performance Scholar Extraordinaire: Honouring Mwalimu.” Jahazi Vol.4 Twaweza Communications


“Nurturing the Next Generation.” Special Issue of Africa Development on “The Fourth Generation of Post-Colonial African Intellectuals”. 33.1 7-24.
“Nationhood and National Identity.” KenyaThabiti Taskforce Report into the Post-Election Violence.” Kenya Inter-Religious Forum
‘“Watered with Blood”: Kenyan National Institutions and the Search for Cultural Identity.” Jahazi Vol.3 Twaweza Communications
“Njia Panda: Kenyan Theatre in Search of Identity.” Getting Heard: Re-claiming Performance Space in Kenya. Twaweza Communications


“Performing Our Stories, Performing Ourselves: In Search of Kenya’s Uhuru Generation.” Africa Development No. 33(3). 129 – 134.
“‘Justice be our Shield and Defender’: An Intellectual Property Rights Regime for Africa.” Africa Development 32(3). 143–146.


“Leaders of Tomorrow? The Youth and Democratisation in Kenya”. Murunga, Godwin and ShadrackNasong’o, eds. Kenya: The Struggle for Democracy. London, New York: Zed Books; Dakar, Senegal: CODESRIA. 129-163.


“Looking Back, Moving Forward: Reflections on Forum ’85”. CODESRIA Bulletin No. 1 and 2. 6-8. 56 – 85.

Research: Co-publications

2011 (with Katindi Sivi-Njonjo) KEYS – Kenya Youth Scenarios. Nairobi: Institute of Economic Affairs (Kenya).
2008 (with Renee Craft Alexander, Meida Mcneal and Queen Meccasia Zabriskie.) 'The Quilt: Toward a Twenty-First Century Black Feminist Ethnography'. Performance Research 12(3).

Research: Forthcoming Publications

“Betwixt and Between: Transcending Boundaries in the Making of Meaning.” Association for Theatre in Higher Education (USA) 2011 plenary prompt.
“National Liberation as an Act of Culture”. DAAD Alumni Denkfabrik– Kenya

Contact us

Nairobi Office:
Jacaranda Avenue, P.O. BOX 25742, 00603, Nairobi
Phone : +254 020 3870225

London Office:
School of Global Affairs
King's College London, Strand Campus
Bush House (North East Wing), Room 2.16
30 Aldwych London, WC2B 4BG
Phone: +44 (0) 207 848 1984/8645

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