Paper $30.00 ISBN: 9780226624341 Published April 2019
Cloth $90.00 ISBN: 9780226624204 Published April 2019
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Fada

Boredom and Belonging in Niger

Adeline Masquelier

Fada

Adeline Masquelier

264 pages | 15 halftones | 6 x 9 | © 2019
Paper $30.00 ISBN: 9780226624341 Published April 2019
Cloth $90.00 ISBN: 9780226624204 Published April 2019
E-book $10.00 to $30.00 About E-books ISBN: 9780226624488 Published May 2019
Niger most often comes into the public eye as an example of deprivation and insecurity. Urban centers have become concentrated areas of unemployment filled with young men trying, against all odds, to find jobs and fill their time with meaningful occupations. At the heart of Adeline Masquelier’s groundbreaking book is the fada—a space where men gather to escape boredom by talking, playing cards, listening to music, and drinking tea. As a place in which new forms of sociability and belonging are forged outside the unattainable arena of work, the fada has become an integral part of Niger’s urban landscape. By considering the fada as a site of experimentation, Masquelier offers a nuanced depiction of how young men in urban Niger engage in the quest for recognition and reinvent their own masculinity in the absence of conventional avenues to self-realization. In an era when fledgling and advanced economies alike are struggling to support meaningful forms of employment, this book offers a timely glimpse into how to create spaces of stability, respect, and creativity in the face of diminished opportunities and precarity.
 
Contents
Introduction

One / Waiting for Tea
Two / The Writing on the Walls: Ma(r)king the Place of Youth
Three / Snapshots: Bringing (Invisible) Women into View
Four / Hip-Hop, Truth, and Islam
Five / Keeping Watch: Bodywork, Street Ethics, and Masculinity
Six / Dress and the Time of Youth
Seven / Zigzag Politics: Tea, Ballots, and Agency

Conclusion

Acknowledgments
Glossary
Notes
References
Index
Review Quotes
Marcia C. Inhorn, Yale University
“This vivid and humanizing portrayal of young men’s lives in urban Niger challenges many assumptions about Islam, masculinity, and ‘stuck youth’ in Africa. Fada is a must-read for gender and African studies scholars, as well as those interested in aesthetics and emergent youth cultures in the global South.”
Brad Weiss, College of William & Mary
“With Fada, Masquelier provides a sensitive, nuanced, and exhaustive understanding of the lived experience of young men and women in urban Niger. Masquelier’s unparalleled ethnographic appreciation of communities in Niger and her depth of experience allow her to capture the fadas as ‘dwelling’ in all their innovative and compelling forms. These are the ‘moral laboratories’ where solidarities are forged and tested, where sociality is offered up with tea and hip-hop, and where people are on the move even as they carefully wait for what the future holds.”
Charles Piot, Duke University
“A brilliant ethnographic and theoretical intervention graced by elegant writing. This book will captivate anyone with an interest in youth culture in demographically explosive, employment-challenged contemporary Africa. The fada where precarious youths congregate in the cities of Niger are social laboratories, at once sites of participatory politics and biting critique, of boredom and masculine conviviality, of hope and dreaming, of sartorial excess and Muslim piety. This is an immensely informative and pleasurable read.”
For more information, or to order this book, please visit https://www.press.uchicago.edu
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