Mobile Africa: Changing Patterns of Movement in Africa and Beyond

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Mirjam de Bruijn, Rijk van Dijk, D. Foeken
Brill, 2001 - Architecture - 214 pages
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This anthology deals with the complexity, variety and experience of all the forms of mobility we witness today in Sub-Saharan Africa. Three sets of issues are being discussed. First, the concept of mobility itself is considered and how it is conceived of in distinction from sedentarity. Second, which forms of mobility can be distinguished, not only from the perspective of Western social sciences, but also from the perspective of people's own experiences, ideas, notions, etc? Social science in Africa has particularly focused on rural-urban migration, but it is clear that there are many other forms as well. Third, the concept of mobility concerns not only geographical space, but there are other 'spaces' to consider as well. In addition to 'forms of mobility' there is a 'mobility of forms' in which the perception of those other spaces plays a crucial role. In short, the book intends to turn the whole notion of mobility as a supposedly rupturing phenomenon on its head, emphasizing that rather through travelling connections are established and continuity is experienced. We are challenged to delve into the traveller's mind, to think and follow their multi-spatial livelihoods and to explore what it means to people if they move in a variety of spaces.

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About the author (2001)

Mirjam de Bruijn is an anthropologist working on the theme of how people manage risk (drought, war, etc.) in the Sahel. Rijk van Dijk is an anthropologist researching modern religion in Africa and in Ghana and Malawi in particular. Dick Foeken is a human geographer whose present research interest concerns urban agriculture in Africa, especially in Kenya and Tanzania. All three work at the African Studies Centre in Leiden, The Netherlands.

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