Dr Foreman Bandama, Field Museum of Natural History & University of Illinois, Chicago

After three years at Sol Plaatje University, Dr Foreman Bandama took a double appointment at the Field Museum of Natural History (75%) and the University of Illinois Chicago (25%) in August 2021. At the Field Museum, he joins the Negaunee Integrative Research Center as the Assistant Curator of African Anthropology where his role is to manage, organize exhibitions and conduct research on African collections housed in the museum. This is over and above conducting his own independent research. Within the museum context, an assistant curator is the equivalent of an associate professor. Starting in January 2022, Dr Bandama will teach one module per year, while supervising postgraduate students and contributing to the academic life of the Anthropology Department at UIC.


Foreman Bandama is an African Iron Age Archaeologist who specializes in pre-industrial ceramics, glass beads, archaeometallurgy, and heritage studies. His doctoral thesis from the University of Cape Town explored the history, innovation and technology of tin and bronze metallurgy in southern Africa. Dr Bandama’s work draws liberally from both African theory and his personal experiences a product of a rural crafting Tsonga family from Zimbabwe. Foreman is particularly interested in African innovations and achievements relating to complex societies and their interactions with the outside world. Among his long-term projects are understanding class and state formation at Great Zimbabwe and some of the key polities in southern Africa.