Middle Class Urbanism. An interdisciplinary study of the physical reordering of urban sub-Saharan Africa is an interdisciplinary research project funded by the Danish Council for Independent Research (FKK). The aim with the project is to investigate rapid urbanization processes in sub-Saharan Africa with a special focus on the radical transformations of the built environment caused by middle class urbanism.
Taking Maputo, Mozambique, as an ideal example of this development, the project integrates perspectives from anthropology, architecture, urban studies and history. These perspectives are drawn together under an analytical framework that conceptualizes ’middle class urbanism’ as a cluster of practices -cross-cutting the legal and the illegal, the formal and the informal - that is structured by ideas of privacy and security as key factors for improving the quality of urban life.
It is the project’s hypotheses that ‘middle-class urbanism’ is a key driver for the reordering of the built environment in sub-Saharan Africa and that new forms of citizenship, which have the city rather than the nationstate as primary political community, emerge as an outcome of these processes.