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Simukai Tinhu

was fortunate to be part of a class who were an assortment of different nationalities. Our diverse cultural backgrounds enriched our seminar discussions and social events.

My research interests were rooted in ‘social evolution’; I sought to examine how changes in the social topography of Africa’s rural societies affected political relationships between traditional authorities and new social constellations. By completing independent research and exploring these ideas in my dissertation, I greatly enhanced my academic potential. The greatest attraction of the MPhil was how it allowed me to read about Africa’s brutal yet vibrant story from a multidisciplinary point of view, involving anthropology, history, geography, political science and economics. As a result, I can today generate authoritative insights on a range of African issues, such as my critical analysis of Morgan Tsvangirai, which was recently published by African Arguments. The intensive Swahili language training also sets the Cambridge MPhil apart from other British postgraduate degrees in African Studies.

While excellent educational opportunities exist in Africa, for me, studying Africa from a UK and European viewpoint broadened my perspective. But, most importantly, I am grateful for the lifelong relationships that I forged with the Cambridge African Studies community; from classmates, to academics, to staff members. I am currently working in management consultancy and not in an Africa-related job, but I continue to build on skills I acquired in the MPhil.

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