This panel examines from a biographical perspective how the urban and the rural are connected in the lives of middle classes in African cities. Which urban-rural relations are meaningful for the biographies of urban middle classes (family, jobs and farming, ethnicity, distinction from the rural…)?
A variety of aspects are can be considered in this panel: Which relations to the rural are or have been relevant for the life of urban middle classes in different African regions and countries? This comprises, for instance, several homes (rural and urban), family and ethnic ties to certain regions, aspects like working in the city and farming on the country side and more aspects among urban middle classes. However, this question can cover forms of distinction from the rural and the influence of urbanized lifestyles or the emergence of social media and mobile phone communication too. So another goal of the panel is to identify important trends, such as patterns of rural-urban relations, subgroups/milieus among middle classes with certain characteristics and geographical patterns (in East/West/South Africa; in mega-cities/ big cities/ medium sized cities etc.).