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Title:Recycling citizenship: infrastructural transformation and access struggles in Dakar's solid waste management system
Author(s):Zaimi, Rea
Advisor(s):Ribot, Jesse C.
Department / Program:Geography & Geographic InfoSci
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
transnational activism
waste infrastructures
Abstract:In transforming the city's waste infrastructure towards mechanized incineration, a pending waste management reform in Dakar stands to dispossess over a thousand recycling workers, whose future access to waste and participation in the city's waste system is in limbo. In the face of an infrastructural reform that compromises their livelihoods, the workers draw on their ties to global civil society actors and a transnational advocacy network as they mobilize to defend their access to waste. This study analyzes the workers’ mobilization as a citizenship struggle, given that their claims signify efforts to influence the political economy that shapes their livelihoods. Situated at the intersection of infrastructural violence, transnational activism, and substantive citizenship scholarship, this research draws on qualitative field research and document analysis to show how ties to global civil society actors can erode the practice of citizenship by weakening the capacity of the workers to be politically engaged and to shape the fate of their polity. In this case, the international civil society groups and transnational advocacy networks involved are financially supportive but politically uninvolved in ways that distance the workers from the state and disenable them from influencing government decision making. The emphasis in transnational activism literature on the emancipatory implications of local-global alliances for local struggles thus needs to be further scrutinized with respect to the ways in which these alliances transform local practices and formulations of citizenship.
Issue Date:2015-12-01
Rights Information:Copyright 2016 Rea Zaimi
Date Available in IDEALS:2016-07-07
Date Deposited:2016-05

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