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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Of other spaces? Hybrid forms of Chinese engagement in Sub-Saharan Africa
Author:Dittgen, Romain
Periodical:Journal of Current Chinese Affairs
Geographic terms:Chad
South Africa
External link:https://journals.sub.uni-hamburg.de/giga/jcca/article/view/815/816
Abstract:Chinese economic activities in Africa have gained increased visibility in parallel to the recent acceleration of Sino-African relations. This paper, which is framed from a geographical perspective that is often absent or neglected in studies covering China-Africa, focuses on the spatial forms and dynamics. It depicts the way in which two contrasting Chinese economic entities, a state-owned company in Chad and privately owned commercial malls in Johannesburg, South Africa, engage with their respective host environments. While drawing on concepts of 'liminality' as well as 'heterotopias', the author argues that the modalities of the Chinese footprint are characterised both by closure and interaction, creating a dynamic tension that produces its own set of unique practices. This ambivalence between enclave and active linkages with host societies is not only perceivable from a spatial point of view, but also emerges with regard to economic strategies. In the midst of a transitional period, along with a launching and a consolidating phase, the Chinese economic entities in both case studies show signs of change in terms of behaviour and territorial foothold. Bibliogr., sum. [Journal abstract]