1st Edition

Transport, Transgression and Politics in African Cities The Rhythm of Chaos

Edited By Daniel Agbiboa Copyright 2019
    192 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    192 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This collection of field-based case-studies examines the role and contributions of Africa’s informal public transport (also referred to as paratransit) to the production of city forms and urban economies, as well as the voices, experiences, and survival tactics of its poor and stigmatised workforce. With attention to the question of what a micro-level analysis of the organisation and politics of informal public transport in urbanizing Africa might tell us about the precarious existence and agency of its informal workforce, it explores the political and socio-economic conditions of contemporary African cities, spanning from Nairobi and Dar es Salaam to Harare, Cape Town, Kinshasa and Lagos. Mapping, analysing and comparing the everyday experiences of informal transport operators across the continent, this book sheds light on the multiple challenges facing Africa’s informal transport workers today, as they negotiate the contours of city life, expand their horizons of possibility and make the most of their time. It thus offers directions for more effective policy response to urban public transport, which is changing fundamentally and rapidly in light of neoliberal urban planning strategies and ‘World Class’ city ambitions.

    Notes on the Contributors

    Introduction: Transport, Transgression and Politics in African Cities: An Introduction (Daniel E. Agbiboa)

    Part I: Historical Perspectives

    1. "Taxi Pirates": A Comparative History of Informal Transport in Nairobi and Kinshasa, 1960s-2000s (Robert Heinze)

    Part II: Politics, Power and Patronage

    2. Stomach Infrastructure: Informal Transport, Electoral Politics, and the Precariousness of Patronage in Lagos (Daniel E. Agbiboa)

    3. Informal Transport, Politics and Power in Harare (Davison Muchadenyika)

    Part III: (Auto)Mobility And Place-Making

    4. Place Ballet in a South African Minibus Taxi Rank (Bradley Rink)

    5. Interfered Rhythms, Navigating Mobilities: Chinese Migrants on the Roads in Lagos (Allen Xiao)

    Part IV: Pathways: Social Network And State Law

    6. Practices, Positions and Power Relations: Pathways of Transport Workers in The Field of Motorcycle-Taxi Services in Dar Es Salaam (Daniel Ehebrecht & Barbara Lenz)

    7. State Law as A Means Of Resistance: Okada Riders Versus The Lagos State Government (Daniel E. Agbiboa)

    Conclusion: The Rhythm of Chaos: A Conclusion (Daniel E. Agbiboa)



    Daniel E. Agbiboa is Assistant Professor at George Mason University’s School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, USA.