Infrastructure and Logistics

Of bakeries and checkpoints: Stately affects in Amman and Baghdad

This paper examines bakeries and checkpoints through their relationship to the state and connects considerations of affect with the burgeoning literature on infrastructure. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in Amman and Baghdad, we centre routine encounters at these sites and argue that infrastructural engagements ignite energies, desires and sentiments that are deeply implicated in how the state plays out in everyday life. We zoom in on these ordinary affects and unpack the situated histories of rule in which they emerge. In Amman and Baghdad, stately affects work in and through infrastructure, doing so with regularity and intensity, and at specific times and places. The state effect transpires and thrives through these quotidian affective resonances, not just in the realm of ideas and imaginaries.

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Volume 38 Issue 5

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