african roads

Motor roads, together with their rules and conventions for using them, are quite literally cultural constructions. In this sense, the road regime in large parts of the African continent is still under construction. Road-making and road use draw from North Atlantic models but observation of the African road makes clear that beyond the surface of adaptation to the North Atlantic model lie large spaces of creative reinterpretations and modifications …
    For an anthropological research project on roads, transport and traffic in Africa, we offer a position for one doctoral student (E13/2), funded initially for two years by the German Research Council (DFG), for conducting fieldwork in Northern Sudan and for dissertation writing.
    Applicants—preferably with knowledge of Arabic—should send their applications or inquiries to Prof. Dr. Kurt Beck, Ethnologie[at]uni[minus]bayreuth[dot]de

For getting a taste of the flavour of this kind of ethnographic things, have a look at anthroad, and—more general—for appropriation of technology, recycling, and creativity in Africa see afrigadget, and/or read:

BECK, KURT. 2009. “The art of truck modding on the Nile (Sudan): An attempt to trace creativity [.pdf | 2.5 MB],” in The speed of change: Motor vehicles and people in Africa, 1890-2000 edited by Jan-Bart Gewald, Sabine Luning and Klaas van Walraven, pp. 151-173. Leiden, Boston: Brill.
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