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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Making the city of nations and nationalities: the politics of ethnicity and roads in Hawassa, Ethiopia
Authors:Mains, DanielISNI
Kinfu, Eshetayehu
Periodical:Journal of Modern African Studies (ISSN 0022-278X)
Geographic term:Ethiopia
Subjects:road construction
ethnic relations
urban society
External link:https://doi.org/10.1017/S0022278X16000562
Abstract:This article examines the relationship between the politics of ethnicity and road construction in Hawassa, Ethiopia. The Ethiopian state has recently invested unprecedented amounts of money in the construction of urban roads. These roads both undermine and reinforce longstanding ethnic hierarchies within Ethiopian cities. Contrary to the image promoted by the state of harmony among residents of different ethnic backgrounds, this research reveals a great deal of tension, particularly concerning the distribution of benefits from state-led infrastructural development. The experiences of residents in rapidly changing neighbourhoods, demonstrate that the benefits of recent road construction are not necessarily distributed according to the policies of the current regime. Instead, historical inequalities interact with contemporary urban development in ways that may actually disrupt the state's vision of unity through diversity. Stratification is built into the city and attempts to reshape the city necessarily interact with recent and long-standing inequalities. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]