ArticlePDF Available


This article sheds light on subterranean and subjective dimensions that shape specific sectors of African middle-classes: processes of personal subjectivation, understood as the construction of oneself as an actor of one’s own life, against the hold of political, cultural or economic domination. Cameroon offers an insightful case study. Most of the country’s middle-class owns its status and economic situation to the regime’s patronage system. However, our series of biographical interviews shows the emergence of new subjectivities in citizens who decided to change the course of their lives following the 1990s democratic protests. Members of this ‘indocile middle-class’ have prioritised the development of economic, media or cultural projects that have allowed them to implement different values and set up spaces that escape the cultural and social control of the political regime and may contribute to a more democratic and better developed Cameroon.
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any citations for this publication.
Full-text available
This volume challenges the concept of the ‘new African middle class’ with new theoretical and empirical insights into the changing lives in Sub-Saharan Africa. Diverse middle classes are on the rise, but models of class based on experiences from other regions of the world cannot be easily transferred to the African continent. Empirical contributions, drawn from a diverse range of contexts, address both African histories of class formation and the political roles of the continent’s middle classes, and also examine the important interdependencies that cut across inter-generational, urban-rural and class divides. This thought-provoking book argues emphatically for a revision of common notions of the 'middle class', and for the inclusion of insights 'from the South' into the global debate on class. Middle Classes in Africa will be of interest to students and scholars across a range of disciplines, as well as NGOs and policy makers with an interest in African societies.
Full-text available
The Revolution of the Chinese Goods in Africa Although Sino-African trade has increased significantly during the last fifteen years, this article aims to examine the consequences of the arrival of Chinese goods in the daily life of African societies. Omnipresent, even in the most remote villages, they coincide with Africa entering an era of mass consumption. These goods are frequently analyzed through the sole lens of their cheap prices. Yet, they contribute in fact to the emergence of a new material culture. In this article, we look at African consumers of made in China, but also at African traders of the Chinese goods, as a key category of actors in this emerging material culture. It is eventually argued that African traders’ activities also reconfigure power relations surrounding the access to extraversion.