Nostalgia for the Future: West Africa after the Cold War

Nostalgia for the Future: West Africa after the Cold War

by Charles Piot
     
 

Since the End of the Cold War, Africa has seen a dramatic rise in new political and religious phenomena, including an eviscerated privatized state, neoliberal NGOs, Pentecostalism, a resurgence in accusations of witchcraft, a culture of scamming and fraud, and, in some countries, a nearly universal wish to emigrate. Drawing on fieldwork in Togo, Charles Piot

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Overview

Since the End of the Cold War, Africa has seen a dramatic rise in new political and religious phenomena, including an eviscerated privatized state, neoliberal NGOs, Pentecostalism, a resurgence in accusations of witchcraft, a culture of scamming and fraud, and, in some countries, a nearly universal wish to emigrate. Drawing on fieldwork in Togo, Charles Piot suggests that a new biopolitics after state sovereignty is remaking the face of one of the world's poorest regions.

In a country where playing the U.S. Department of State's green card lottery is a national pastime and the preponderance of cybercafés and Western Union branches signals a widespread desire to connect to the rest of the world, Nostalgia for the Future makes clear that the cultural and political terrain that underlies postcolonial theory has shifted. In order to map out this new terrain, Piot enters into critical dialogue with a host of important theorists, including Agamben, Hardt and Negri, Deleuze, and Mbembe. The result is a deft interweaving of rich observations of Togolese life with profound insights into the new, globalized world in which that life takes place.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780226669656
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Publication date:
07/01/2010
Pages:
200
Sales rank:
1,070,721
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction 1

1 States of Emergency 21

2 The End of History 53

3 Exit Strategy 77

Mise En Scène 97

4 Charismatic Enchantments 103

5 Arrested Development 133

6 The Death of a Culture 163

Notes 171

Bibliography 185

Index 197

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