Routes and Rites to the City: Mobility, Diversity and Religious Space in Johannesburg

Wilhelm-Solomon, M., Núñez, L., Kankonde Bukasa, P. & Malcomess, B. (Eds.) (2016) Routes and Rites to the City: Mobility, Diversity and Religious Space in Johannesburg. Palgrave Macmillan UK.

Supported by the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft ‘Super-Diversity’ South Africa project.

About the book:
This project is exploration of the ways religion and diverse forms of mobility have shaped post-apartheid Johannesburg, South Africa. It analyses transnational and local migration in contemporary and historical perspective, along with movements of commodities, ideas, sounds and colours within the city. It re-theorizes urban ‘super diversity’ as a plurality of religious, ethnic, national and racial groups but also as the diverse processes through which religion produces urban space.

The authors argue that while religion facilitates movement, belonging and aspiration in the city, it is complicit in establishing new forms of enclosure, moral order and spatial and gendered control. Multi authored and interdisciplinary, this edited collection deals with a wide variety of sites and religions, including Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Judaism. Its original reading of post-apartheid Johannesburg advances global debates around religion, urbanization, migration and diversity, and will appeal to students and scholars working in these fields.

The project involves two outputs; a freely available visual supplement and a full-length book.

About Matthew Wilhelm-Solomon

Matthew Wilhelm-Solomon is a Writing Fellow on the Migration and Health Project Southern Africa, based at the African Centre for Migration & Society at the University of Witwatersrand (Wits).

Matthew holds a doctorate from the University of Oxford, which was ethnographic study of HIV/AIDS treatment programmes to displaced communities in northern Uganda. Over the past five years he has conducting research in inner-city Johannesburg on themes of migration, religion, health and housing. He is beginning new research looking at African migration to Brazil.

Matthew has published widely in different books and journals including Medical Anthropology, Critical African Studies and the African Cities Reader, and a number of newspapers and journalistic publications including the Mail & Guardian, Sunday Times, Chimurenga Chronic and the ConMag. He is presently completing a narrative book about unlawfully occupied buildings in inner-city Johannesburg. He is the lead editor on the forthcoming book 'Routes and Rites to the City: Mobility, Diversity and Religious Space in Johannesburg' to be published by Palgrave-MacMilllan.

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