This book offers a broad range of perspectives on major transformations in the research of labor in Africa contexts over the last twenty years. This is a groundbreaking work by social scientists and historians; adopting innovative paradigms in the study of African laborers, working classes and economies, it moves away from stringent Marxist perspectives towards more localized and fluid conceptions of materiality and productivity. Against the backdrop of increasing mobility of labor and capital, the authors demonstrate the need for a simultaneous consideration of local, national and transnational contexts. The collection of essays provides multiple perspectives on how African workers have negotiated changes and exploited opportunities in increasingly globalized workplaces, while at the same time confronting the impact of global capitalist expansion on local settings in Africa.
This book was previously published as a Special Issue of African Identities.
Table of Contents
1. Rethinking Labour in Africa, Past and Present - Lynn Schler and Louise Bethlehem 2. Dialogical subjectivities for hard times: expanding political and ethical imaginaries of subaltern and elite Batswana women - Pnina Werbner 3. Work discipline, discipline in Tunisia: complex and ambiguous relations - Beatrice Hibou 4. Migration for 'white man's work': an empirical rebuttal to Marxist Theory - Isaie Dougnon 5. Casting aluminium cooking pots: labour, migration and artisan production in West Africa's informal sector, 1945-2005 - Emily Lynn Osborn 6. Transnationalism and nationalism in the Nigerian Seamen's Union - Lynn Schler 7. What goes around, comes around: rotating credit associations among Ethiopian women in Israel - Hagar Salamon, Steven Kaplan and Harvey Goldberg 8. Park pictures: on the work of photography in Johannesburg - Louise Bethlehem and Terry Kurgan
Lynn Schler is a lecturer in African History in the Department of Politics and Government at Ben Gurion University, Israel. Her work has focused on the cultural and social history of colonialism in West Africa, with an emphasis on urbanization and community building. She is the author of The Strangers of New Bell: Immigration, Public Space and Community in Colonial Douala, 1916-1960.
Louise Bethlehem is senior lecturer in the Department of English at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where she currently also heads the Program in Cultural Studies. She co-edited the Routledge volume Violence and Non-Violence in Africa (also published by Routledge), and Skin Tight: Apartheid Literary Culture and its Aftermath.
Galia Sabar is a senior lecturer and the Chair of African Studies at Tel Aviv University. She is the author of Church, State, and Society in Kenya; From Mediation to Opposition, 1963-1993 (also published by Routledge), and co-editor of AIDS Education Prevention in Multi-Cultural Societies.