Bottleneck: Moving, Building, And Belonging In An African City by Caroline MellyBottleneck: Moving, Building, And Belonging In An African City by Caroline Melly

Bottleneck: Moving, Building, And Belonging In An African City

byCaroline Melly

Hardcover | October 17, 2017

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In Bottleneck, anthropologist Caroline Melly uses the problem of traffic bottlenecks to launch a wide-ranging study of mobility in contemporary urban Senegal—a concept that she argues is central to both citizens' and the state's visions of a successful future.
Melly opens with an account of the generation of urban men who came of age on the heels of the era of structural adjustment, a diverse cohort with great dreams of building, moving, and belonging, but frustratingly few opportunities to do so. From there, she moves to a close study of taxi drivers and state workers, and shows how bottlenecks—physical and institutional—affect both. The third section of the book covers a seemingly stalled state effort to solve housing problems by building large numbers of concrete houses, while the fourth takes up the thousands of migrants who attempt, sometimes with tragic results, to cross the Mediterranean on rickety boats in search of new opportunities. The resulting book offers a remarkable portrait of contemporary Senegal and a means of theorizing mobility and its impossibilities far beyond the African continent.
Caroline Melly is associate professor of anthropology at Smith College.  
Title:Bottleneck: Moving, Building, And Belonging In An African CityFormat:HardcoverDimensions:224 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.7 inPublished:October 17, 2017Publisher:University of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022648887X

ISBN - 13:9780226488875

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Editorial Reviews

“Using the phenomenon of embouteillages—or bottlenecks—as a literal and metaphorical entry point, Melly shows how overlapping circuitries of movement and the blockages that impede them are central to political-economic and cultural processes in this African city. She combines rich ethnography with innovative theorizing to produce superb scholarship in anthropology and African studies, and contributes significantly to understanding a range of intersecting issues including statecraft, development, urbanization, migration, gender, and an emerging anthropology of infrastructure.”