Money Has No Smell: The Africanization of New York City by Paul Stoller

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Author
Paul Stoller
Publisher
University Of Chicago Press
Date of release
Pages
232
ISBN
9780226775302
Binding
Paperback
Illustrations
Format
PDF, EPUB, MOBI, TXT, DOC
Rating
5
42

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Money Has No Smell: The Africanization of New York City

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Book review

In February 1999 the tragic New York City police shooting of Amadou Diallo, an unarmed street vendor from Guinea, brought into focus the existence of West African merchants in urban America. In Money Has No Smell, Paul Stoller offers us a more complete portrait of the complex lives of West African immigrants like Diallo, a portrait based on years of research Stoller conducted on the streets of New York City during the 1990s.

Blending fascinating ethnographic description with incisive social analysis, Stoller shows how these savvy West African entrepreneurs have built cohesive and effective multinational trading networks, in part through selling a simulated Africa to African Americans. These and other networks set up by the traders, along with their faith as devout Muslims, help them cope with the formidable state regulations and personal challenges they face in America. As Stoller demonstrates, the stories of these West African traders illustrate and illuminate ongoing debates about globalization, the informal economy, and the changing nature of American communities.


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