Human Waste/Wasting Humans: Dirt, Disposable Bodies and Power Relations in Nigerian Newspaper Reports

Human Waste/Wasting Humans: Dirt, Disposable Bodies and Power Relations in Nigerian Newspaper Reports

Author: 
Oloko, Patrick
Place: 
Oxon
Publisher: 
Taylor and Francis
Date published: 
2018
Record type: 
Journal Title: 
Social Dynamics
Source: 
Social Dynamics Vol 44 No 1 April 2018 pp. 55-68
Abstract: 

This study examines four newspaper reports and analyses the ways that "dirt," "waste" and "garbage" function within a range of intersecting sanitation and social contexts where people and materials figure as disposable objects. My main premise is that when scoop reports in newspapers deal with the issue of "dirt" and sanitation, they often leave undertones that reveal or imply a contest for power in which actual dirt and contamination or their images and vocabularies are employed to justify exclusion from certain social privileges and positions and also to protest such exclusions. I argue and then proceed to show that when "dirt," "waste" and "garbage" are stretched beyond the domain of health, they can offer a lens with multiple focal positions from which we may view and analyse complex political, social and economic behaviours and make sense of them. I focus on Nigerian urban spaces and analyse the reports to show how the terms have come to mark ways that literal and figurative entropy commingle to reveal the dynamics of power and social relations.

Language: 
Country focus: 
Date created: 
Thursday, November 29, 2018