‘The shack becomes the house, the slum becomes the suburb and the slum dweller becomes the citizen’: experiencing abandon and seeking legitimacy in Dar es Salaam

Campbell, Patricia F. (2014) ‘The shack becomes the house, the slum becomes the suburb and the slum dweller becomes the citizen’: experiencing abandon and seeking legitimacy in Dar es Salaam. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Printed Thesis Information: https://eleanor.lib.gla.ac.uk/record=b3084965


This thesis considers the (over)promotion of formal home ownership, and the parallel neglect of rental housing, in international development policy and practice. Using a qualitative methodology, which incorporates policy analysis, as well as interviews and focus groups with key informants and informal residents, this research has moved beyond broad, singular conceptualisations of the ‘slum’. Instead, this study offers an insight into the multiple lived experiences of informal urban housing, in the context of a tenure-biased policy landscape. Research with informal residents was carried out exclusively with members of community-led groups who are in the process of resettling to formal plots on the margins of Dar es Salaam city.

Drawing upon Foucaultian governmentality scholarship, the findings of this study highlight the centrality of housing tenure in notions of being counted, recognition and urban citizenship. The research findings highlight the complexities of informal urban housing, drawing particular attention to the everyday realities of renting shelter in the urban private rental market. In exploring the lived realities of informal housing in Dar es Salaam, this thesis uncovers the everyday realities of a wholesale neglect of the private rental sector in policy and the lack of recognition of private renters by the Tanzanian state. Using two distinct case-studies of forced eviction in Dar es Salaam, this thesis interrogates the process and management of eviction, demonstrating the centrality of tenure in determining the validity of claims for state support and recognition and in shaping state-citizen relations. In engaging with members of community-led groups that are resettling, and have resettled, to formal plots on the urban fringe, this thesis further scrutinises the positioning of individual, formal home ownership as a universal normative ideal. This research considers resettlement as a considered strategy by informal residents to achieve a sense of belonging in Dar es Salaam, a performance of citizenship. Yet, this thesis questions ‘resettlement’ as an optimum strategy for securing an officially recognised place in the city. This thesis will consider the complex hopes, dreams and trade-offs made in decisions to resettle and consider the implications of resettlement for notions of a right to the city.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: informality, citizenship, home ownership, rental housing
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Colleges/Schools: College of Science and Engineering > School of Geographical and Earth Sciences > Geography
Supervisor's Name: Sharp, Professor Joanne and Briggs, Professor John
Date of Award: 2014
Depositing User: Patricia F. Campbell
Unique ID: glathesis:2014-5612
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 21 Oct 2014 09:56
Last Modified: 31 Jan 2020 16:06
URI: https://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/5612

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