Plenarveranstaltung II / Plenary session II: Bureaucratic closings - Bureaucratic openings
"Bureaucratic space-times: on proliferation, cryptobiosis, and other contingent practices of land management institutions in Lesotho"
Sprecher / Speaker:
Colin Hoag (Smith College, USA)
Scholars often locate the negotiability of bureaucracy outside of formal procedures, in the “informal” practices and interactions between bureaucrats and those outside. This paper explores closure as related to formal procedures, specifically, in the way different document genres and genre systems distribute capacities to recognize relations and categorizations. This problem is discussed with reference to the practices that allow people to hold land in urban South Asia. Property is a kind of holding that is closely related to the way different documents and configurations of documents enable bureaucratic closure. In understanding property, we should shift from a liberal emphasis onthe bundling of certain rights to the documentary distribution of recognition of claims that people make on some patch of the world. Empirically, this extends our view from bureaucratic documents explicitly addressing the legal property claims (e.g. deeds, 2titles), to the para-¬documentation (e.g. utility bills, newspaper delivery receipts) that is so often decisive in allowing people to claim and hold land.
Datum: Montag, 30. September 2019