Tsitsi B Masvawure


Sociology and Anthropology
Center for Interdisciplinary Studies 

Professor of Practice in Health Studies and Health Studies Program Advisor and Coordinator, Center for Interdisciplinary Studies

DPhil Anthropology (University of Pretoria, South Africa)

Fields: medical anthropology, HIV/AIDS, gender equity and women’s rights, reproductive and sexual health, international development, global health, public health, health promotion, program design, management and evaluation

Contact Information

Office Phone: 508-793-3581
Office:  Smith Hall,  330
Box: 50A


I am a medical anthropologist, gender equity activist and HIV/AIDS program implementer and global health researcher. My research focuses mostly on issues of gender, sex(uality) and health. My doctorate dissertation examined how gender norms and “campus sexual cultures” shaped HIV-risk among female and male students on a university campus in Zimbabwe. My doctorate was influenced by the many years I had spent as a co-founder and manager of SHAPE Zimbabwe Trust, an HIV prevention organization that implemented programs in four universities in Zimbabwe. After my doctorate, I completed two years as a postdoctoral research fellow at the HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies at Columbia University (New York City) and then worked as a Program Manager on a maternal health evaluation study in the Dept of Epidemiology at Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health.

As Professor of Practice in Health Studies in the Center for Interdisciplinary Studies, I currently teach Introduction to Global Health and HIV/AIDS in Global Perspective, advise Health Studies majors and coordinate the Health Studies program. I joined the College of the Holy Cross in January 2016 as a Visiting Lecturer in the Dept of Sociology and Anthropology; from August 2017-May 2018,  I was a Visiting Assistant Professor position in the same department and from August 2018-May 2019, I was a Visiting Assistant Professor in Center for Interdisciplinary Studies and taught in the Montserrat Program.


  • CIS 250           Introduction to Global Health
  • CISS 255         Critical Issues in Global Health
  • CISS 399         HIV/AIDS in Global Perspective
  • ANTH 260      Medical Anthropology
  • ANTH 253      Gender and Development
  • ANTH 101      Anthropological Perspectives
  • ANTH 399      AIDS in Africa and Beyond
  • MONTS 113   Gender, Health and Rights (Pathologies & Power)

Select Publications

Journal articles

  • Valente, P.K., Mantell, J.E., Masvawure, T.B., Tocco, J.U., Restar, A.J., Gichangi, P., Chabeda, S.V., Lafort, Y., and Sandfort, T.G. (2019). “I couldn’t afford to resist”: condom negotiations between male sex workers and male clients in Mombasa, Kenya. AIDS and Behavior. [Online First, July 18th].
  • Masvawure, TB., Mantell, JE., Tocco, JU., Gichangi, P., Restar, A., Chabeda, SV., Lafort, Y., and Sandfort, TGM. (2018). Intentional and unintentional condom breakage and slippage in the sexual interactions of female and male sex workers and clients in Mombasa, Kenya. AIDS and Behavior, 22, 2, 637-648. doi: 10.1007/s10461-017-1922-3
  • Weintraub, A., Mantell, JE., Holt, K., Street, RA., Wilkey, C., Dawad, S., Masvawure, TB., and Hoffman, S. (2017). “These people who dig roots in the forests cannot treat HIV”: Women and men in Durban, South Africa, reflect on traditional medicine and antiretroviral drugs. Global Public Health, 51, 8, 841–851.
  • Restar, A., Tocco, J.U., Mantell, J.E., Lafort, Y., Gichangi, P., Masvawure, T.B., Chabeda, S.C., and Sandfort, T.G.M. (2017). Perspectives on HIV pre- and post- exposure prophylaxes (PrEP and PEP) among female and male sex workers in Mombasa, Kenya: implications for integrating biomedical prevention into sexual health services. AIDS Education and Prevention, 29, 2, 141-153. doi: 10.1521/aeap.2017.29.2.141
  • Sacks, E., Masvawure, T.B., Atuyambe, L.M., Neema, S., Macwan'gi, M., Simbaya, J. Kruk, M.E. (2016). Postnatal care experiences and barriers to care utilization for home- and facility-delivered newborns in Uganda and Zambia. Maternal Child Health, 21, 3, 599-606. doi:10.1007/s10995-016-2144-4.
  • Kruk, M., Vail, D., Austin-Evelyn, K., Atuyambe, L., Kibira, S., Macwangi, M., Simbayi, J., Masvawure, T.B., Sacks, E., Rabkin, M., Grepin, K., and Galeo, S. (2016). Maternal health program in Uganda and Zambia: Mixed results on quality of care and satisfaction. Health Affairs, 35, 3, 510-519. doi: 10.1377/hlthaff.2015.0902.
  • Schuyler, A., Masvawure, T.B., Smit, J., & MantelL, J. (2016). Building young women’s knowledge and skills in female condom use: lessons learned from a South African intervention Health Education and Research, 31, 2, 260-272. .
  • Masvawure, T.B., Mantell, J.E., Mabude, Z., Ngoloyi, C., Milford, C., Beksinska, M., & Smit, J.A. “It's a different condom, let's see how it works”: young men's reactions to, and experiences of female condom use during an intervention trial in South Africa. Journal of Sex Research, 51, 8, 841-851. doi:10.1080/00224499.2013.814043.

Book Chapters

  • Masvawure, T.B. (2015). “I just need to be flashy on campus”: transactional sex and female students at the University of Zimbabwe.” In Aggleton, P., Parker, R., and Thomas, F (Eds). Culture, Health and Sexuality: An Introduction. London and New York: Routledge. Chapter 7. [Reprint of journal article published in Culture, Health and Sexuality, 2010].
  • Masvawure, T.B. (2013). “Sexual pleasure and the pre-marital sexual adventures of young women in Zimbabwe.” In The sexual history of the global south: sexual politics in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Edited by Saskia Wieringa and Horacio Sivori. London/New York: Zed Books. Chapter 13