Praise Zenenga's article navigates the long and troubled history between Zimbabwe's theater artists, and national government and local police strongmen. Zenenga uses the Zimbabwean Censorship and Entertainment Control Act of 1967 as his departure point and compartmentalizes censorship of theater arts into three eras: 1) Zimbabwe's liberation struggle from the late 1960s through the 1970s, 2) the newly won independence of 1980s, with hope of economic and social progress giving way to frustration, and 3) the contemporary clash of President Mugabe's strong response against theater's critique of broken government promises. Even though the Censorship Board demands scripts be registered, Zimbabwean theater artists have found creative ways around censorship throughout these three eras, implementing underground performances and “hit and run” political guerilla theater. Zenenga disturbingly uncovers that, while official government censorship may be decreasing, partly to evade international scrutiny, shadowy interrogation, harassment, and even physical assault of artists are becoming more common.
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Praise Zenenga; Censorship, Surveillance, and Protest Theater in Zimbabwe. Theater 1 November 2008; 38 (3): 67–83. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/01610775-2008-006
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