On Time Technology and Temporality in Modern Egypt

ISBN-10: 0520276140

ISBN-13: 9780520276147

Edition: 2013

Authors: On Barak

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Description:

In this pioneering history of transportation and communication in the modern Middle East, On Barak argues that contrary to accepted wisdom technological modernity in Egypt did not drive a sense of time focused on standardization only. Surprisingly, the introduction of the steamer, railway, telegraph, tramway, and telephone in colonial Egypt actually triggered the development of unique timekeeping practices that resignified and subverted the typical modernist infatuation with expediency and promptness. These countertempos, predicated on uneasiness over "dehumanizing" European standards of efficiency, sprang from and contributed to non-linear modes of arranging time.Barak shows how these countertempos formed and developed with each new technological innovation during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, contributing to a particularly Egyptian sense of time that extends into the present day, exerting influence over contemporary political language in the Arab world. The universal notion of a modern mechanical standard time and the deviations supposedly characterizing non-Western settings "from time immemorial," On Time provocatively argues, were in fact mutually constitutive and mutually reinforcing.
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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 7/19/2013
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 360
Size: 6.00" wide x 8.75" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 1.100
Language: English

List of Illustrations
Acknowledgments
Note on Transliteration
Introduction: Another Time?
En Route
Double Standards
Effendi Hauntologies
Harmonization and Its Discords
The Urban Politics of Slowness
Counterclockwise Revolution
On Hold
Conclusion: Countertemporality
Notes
Bibliography
Index
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