Surviving with Dignity: Hausa Communities of Niamey, Nigerby Scott M. Youngstedt
Surviving with Dignity explores three key interconnected themesstructural violence, suffering, and surviving with dignitythrough examining the lived experiences of first and second-generation migrant Hausa men in Niamey over the past two decades in the current neoliberal moment. Colonialism, state mismanagement, structural adjustment, and global
Surviving with Dignity explores three key interconnected themesstructural violence, suffering, and surviving with dignitythrough examining the lived experiences of first and second-generation migrant Hausa men in Niamey over the past two decades in the current neoliberal moment. Colonialism, state mismanagement, structural adjustment, and global neoliberalism have inflicted structural violence on Nigeriens by denying them human and particularly socioeconomic rights and relegating them to a status ator very nearthe bottom of UN Human Development Index in each year of the past decade. As a result of structural violence, most Hausa of Niamey suffer grinding and intractable poverty that has intensified over the past two decades. Suffering is a recurrent and expected condition; it is the normal condition. The central goal of the book is to explain the material (migration and informal economy work) and symbolic (meaning-making) strategies that Hausa individuals and communities have deployed in their struggles not only to literally survive in the face of economic austerity on the outer periphery of the global economy, but also to survive with dignity. Despite daunting challenges, many Hausa men find strength and patience in their humble devotion to Islam, cherish their vibrant sociability and gracious hospitality, deeply value extraordinary conversational virtuosity and knowledge, deploy humor in complex transcendent, defensive and self-critical ways, perpetuate a sense of hope and optimism for the future, articulate their own modernities, and strive relentlessly to feel connected to the modern world at large. Extreme poverty created by socioeconomic injustice constitutes an unacceptable assault on human dignity. Hausa men’s remarkable strength does not negate the reality of the socioeconomic injustices they face. Their dire poverty in a world of plenty is unacceptable even when they handle it gracefully.
- Lexington Books
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 6.20(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)
- Age Range:
- 18 Years
Meet the Author
Scott M. Youngstedt earned his Ph.D. in Anthropology at UCLA in 1993, and is currently Professor of Anthropology at Saginaw Valley State University. His ethnographic research in Niger over the past 24 years is primarily concerned with exploring the ways by which migrant Hausa construct communities in diaspora, create modernities, and negotiate personal identities in the context of neoliberal globalization. His work has been published in Africa Insight, African Studies Quarterly, African Studies Review, and City and Society, among other places. Youngstedt currently serves as Vice President of the West African Research Association and is in line to become its President in November 2012.
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