Have Your Yellowcake and Eat It. Men, Relatedness and Intimacy in Swakopmund, Namibia

  • Language: English
  • 214 pages
  • Illustrations, maps, index
  • BNSS Vol. 23
  • Print: 978-3-906927-29-9
  • PDF: 978-3-906927-30-5
Jack Boulton

Have Your Yellowcake and Eat It. Men, Relatedness and Intimacy in Swakopmund, Namibia

Have Your Yellowcake and Eat It is a story of men, monsters and uranium in Swakopmund, a small coastal city in the west of Namibia. Founded by German settlers in the late nineteenth century, Swakopmund remains a popular holiday destination for Namibians and international visitors alike.

How do young African men make their home in this peculiar town of pretty beaches and luxury hotels, a brutal colonial history and a large uranium mining industry? Are their close relations affected by global changes in the price of uranium? And how do we describe their life worlds which straddle many homes, neighbourhoods, and establishments – sometimes even existing beyond the limits of the post-colonial city?

Employing a reflexive narrative and based on two year’s fieldwork, Jack Boulton explores the myriad ways in which intimacy develops and manifests for men in a city defined predominantly by racialised difference and local and global forces of inequality.

Jack Boulton is associate researcher at the Institute for Anthropological Research in Africa (IARA), University of Leuven, and editor-in-chief of inter-disciplinary journal Stimulus Respond. His current work explores men’s selfhood and self-making practices in urban Namibian contexts.

Foreword by Steven Van Wolputte Anonymity and Photography Introduction: To the Lighthouse 1 Approaching Swakopmund by Land and by Sea 2 Uranium in Namibia 3 Men, and Women 4 Tentacles 5 Doing Zula 6 Male Relations, Friendship and Kollegen 7 Night-Time 8 Conclusion: Will You Forget Me? Appendix

“This astonishing book of political economy, intimacy and relatedness raises the bar for the ethnography of postcolonial Namibia. Jack Boulton takes his readers deep into the crevices of the lives of young men, by day and night, in the socially and geographically divided space of 21st century Swakopmund. Have your yellow cake and eat it is an exemplary combination of sensitive fieldwork, engaging analysis and captivating writing.” Prof. Heike Becker University of the Western Cape

“This book provides readers with a fresh, grounded look at Namibian men’s intimacies with one another and with women, inviting scholars to reimagine research on African masculinities, relationality, and intimacy. A must-read for scholars in African gender and sexuality studies!” Ashley Currier, author of Out in Africa: LGBT Organizing in Namibia and South Africa and Politicizing Sex in Contemporary Africa: Homophobia in Malawi

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