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Ethnographic circulations: space – time relations in the worlds of poverty management


  • Ananya Roy


This essay takes up the challenge of global ethnography. Using the case of poverty expertise and development capitalism, it presents an analysis of what may be understood as an ethnography of circulations. Building on the emergent research on policy mobilities, it calls for an ethnography of the apparatus or dispositif and its constitutive relations and practices. Here ethnography departs from ontologies of immersion and is instead concerned with critique as a mode of defamiliarization. Against the lament of anthropologists that such global ethnography may entail the loss of the subaltern, the essay presents a different ethnographic muse: middling technocrats who negotiate the apparatus of development and who embody the contradictions of market rule. Keywords: ethnography, neoliberalism, development, assemblage, microfinance

Suggested Citation

  • Ananya Roy, 2012. "Ethnographic circulations: space – time relations in the worlds of poverty management," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 44(1), pages 31-41, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:44:y:2012:i:1:p:31-41

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    Cited by:

    1. Merje Kuus, 2015. "For Slow Research," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 39(4), pages 838-840, July.
    2. Murat Arsel & Sarah A. Radcliffe, 2015. "Forum 2015," Development and Change, International Institute of Social Studies, vol. 46(4), pages 855-874, July.

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