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  • 1.
    Trovalla, Ulrika
    et al.
    The Nordic Africa Institute, Urban Dynamics.
    Trovalla, Eric
    The Nordic Africa Institute, Urban Dynamics.
    Infrastructure turned suprastructure: unpredictable materialities and visions of a Nigerian nation2015In: Journal of material culture, ISSN 1359-1835, E-ISSN 1460-3586, Vol. 20, no 1, p. 43-57Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    There are signs hidden in the infrastructure. In the Nigerian city of Jos, the unpredictable availability of power, fuel, water, etc. becomes a vehicle of meaning. In many settings across the globe, infrastructure is often made invisible, and the centre stage that it takes in everyday life remains unrecognized. In Jos, however, as in many African cities, the constant need to predict its flows contradicts the prefix infra (below); rather than being hidden beneath the realm of experience it is brought to the surface as a puzzle to be figured out. These explorations in turn come to reveal matters beyond the infrastructure itself. Just as diviners infer the state of the world from the stones they have thrown, reading significance out of the seeming randomness of matter, the infrastructure turns intricate questions into tangible clues. It becomes a suprastructure - a divination tool giving clues about the past, present and future of the Nigerian nation.

  • 2.
    Trovalla, Ulrika
    et al.
    The Nordic Africa Institute, Urban Dynamics.
    Trovalla, Eric
    The Nordic Africa Institute, Urban Dynamics.
    Adetula, Victor
    University of Jos.
    Movement as Mediation: Envisioning a Divided Nigerian City2014In: Nordic Journal of African Studies, ISSN 1235-4481, E-ISSN 1459-9465, Vol. 23, no 2, p. 66-82Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Since its establishment in the beginning of the twentieth century, the inhabitants of the ethnically and religiously diverse Nigerian city of Jos have inhabited very different places and travelled along opposite trails – patterns that in recent years, with an escalation of violence, have gained new dimensions. By bringing people’s movements into focus, this article highlights how movement comes in different ways to mediate between people and a city in flux. Brought to light is how movement in several different modalities – fast, slow, in total arrest; clothed in Christian or Muslim attires; by car, on foot, or on horseback; assertive or explorative, in triumph as well as in fear – by mediating between people and the city, brings forth a metaphysical landscape that otherwise is hard to get hold of. In this vein, movement as a medium has become a form of ‘social envisioning’ – a tool for understanding and foretelling the city.

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