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Petermann S.,Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity
Urban Studies | Year: 2014

This article investigates consequences of spatial contexts on interethnic contact. Despite the acknowledged integrative effects of pleasant interethnic relationships, several unresolved issues remain in this research field: investigations at two contextual levels simultaneously-i.e. neighbourhood and municipality levels; investigations of several contextual characteristics simultaneously, e.g. ethnic concentration, physical contact opportunities, population size; investigations on different kinds of interethnic contact, for example, contact with neighbours, with friends or in general. The present study contributes to these issues by analysing interethnic contact from a native's perspective using a German nation-wide dataset. A considerably high proportion of Germans (72 per cent) have contact with foreigners in at least one out of four measured types. Ethnic concentration is the strongest contextual predictor for all kinds of interethnic contact. Physical contact opportunities in the immediate neighbourhood foster interethnic contact in the neighbourhood only, while municipality size mostly diminishes interethnic contact. © 2013 Urban Studies Journal Limited.

Newhouse L.S.,Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity
Environment and Planning A | Year: 2015

This paper frames the political import of refugees' material practices in Kakuma Refugee Camp through critical reflection on Eyal Weizman's notion of the humanitarian present. To begin, I explore how the production of the refugee camp as a space of containment takes place not through a unified humanitarian calculus, but through a set of articulated practices undertaken by various actors—governments, police, aid agencies, host populations, and refugees—all of which have profoundly material manifestations. Secondly, I argue that refugees' pursuits of material well-being through semilicit and illicit means should be read as a practical material critique of the declining standards of humanitarian support. These efforts to achieve sustenance, invest in the future, and exert autonomy serve as a public reminder that humanitarian assistance fails to meet the minimum standard to ensure human existence, and that refugees aim for something more than mere survival. © 2015, © The Author(s) 2015.

Gandhi A.,Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity | Gandhi A.,University of Amsterdam
Ethnography | Year: 2012

This article is a study of Delhi's monkey-catchers, municipal contractors who trap and relocate simians. I examine their perspectives, as well as those of planners and residents. Parallel but competing dispositions vis-à-vis monkeys - fascination and repulsion, piousness and annoyance - are detailed. In so doing, the article addresses the following themes: purification and displacement, the neighbour and stranger, multi-species cohabitation, planning and modernization, and the circulation of gift and sin. Three interwoven arguments bear on studies of modernity, urban governance, and post-humanism. First, Indian cities are not becoming irreversibly bourgeois and sanitized; humans engage in varied ways with monkeys and are complicit in their presence, by ritually gifting food. The logic of the gift vies with the desire to cleanse; a supernatural current animates the modernist city. Second, studies of bureaucratic power often presume coherence and efficiency. In contrast, I illustrate official ambivalence to cleansing, as well as structural constraints and makeshift arrangements that conspire against the master plan. Third, I question post-humanist and multi-species theories that seek to transcend Western ontology. The monkey-catchers' porous taxonomy for human-animal differences affirms human primacy as much as it dissolves dichotomies. © The Author(s) 2012 Reprints and permissions: sagepub.co.uk/journalsPermissions.nav.

Burchardt M.,Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity
Culture, Health and Sexuality | Year: 2013

In South Africa, as elsewhere in the world, responses to HIV and AIDS have been accompanied by calls to 'break the silence' and to openly talk about aspects of intimate life, otherwise considered private. These calls have been followed by the production of new bodies of knowledge about sex, and projections of transparent sexualities. In this context, the concept of counselling has taken on particular significance in terms of re-conceptualising diverse institutional sites as places of education, advice giving and moral inculcation with a view toward behavioural change. In this paper, I trace a series of processes and practices of negotiation whereby in a big church in the city of Cape Town sexuality has been rendered an object of knowledgeability and inquiry. The same processes work as conditions of possibility for the emergence of counselling practices by facilitating the circulation of concepts such as 'responsible relationships', 'responsible choices' and so on through the sites of faith-based health activism. Adopted from public health discourse, but inflected by religious idioms, these concepts allowed for the dissemination of new vocabularies of sex in which counselling is construed as a key mechanism. © 2013 Taylor & Francis.

Burchardt M.,Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity
Sociology of Health and Illness | Year: 2016

This article analyses and theorises the practice of biographical storytelling of HIV-positive AIDS activists in South Africa. Combining research in illness narratives, studies of emotions in social activism and analysis of global health institutions in Africa, I explore how biographical self-narrations are deployed to facilitate access to resources and knowledge and thus acquire material and symbolic value. I illustrate my argument through the analysis of the case of an AIDS activist who became a professional biographical storyteller. Based on the analysis which I claim to represent wider dynamics in human-rights-based health activism in the Global South, I propose the concept of narrative economies by which I mean the set of exchange relationships within which biographical self-narrations circulate and produce social value for individuals and organisations. © 2016 Foundation for the Sociology of Health and Illness.

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