SOAS University of London

Centre of African Studies

The Middle Class in Mozambique: The State and the Politics of Transformation in Southern Africa

The Middle Class in Mozambique
Jason Sumich (Author)

Date: 12 November 2018Time: 5:15 PM

Finishes: 12 November 2018Time: 7:00 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: 4429

Type of Event: Book Launch


In recent years, the growth of a middle class has been a key feature of the 'Africa Rising' narrative. Here, Sumich explores the formation of this middle class in Mozambique, answering questions about the basis of the class system and the social order that gives rise to it. Drawing extensively on his fieldwork, Sumich argues that power and status in dominant party states like Mozambique derives more from the ability to access resources, rather than from direct control of the means of production. By considering the role of the state, he shows how the Mozambican middle class can both be bound to a system they benefit from and alienated from it at the same time, as well as exploring the ways in which the middle classes attempt to reproduce their positions of privilege and highlighting the deep uncertain future that they face. Published for the IAI by Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9781108659659, October 2018 

Speaker Biographies

Jason Sumich (Author) is a lecturer at the department of sociology at the University of Essex. He is a political anthropologist who works on issues of class formation, the state, hegemony, citizenship, and the politics of enclaving in Southern Africa, primarily Mozambique.

Justin Pearce is a lecturer in African politics at the University of Cambridge. His doctoral research was on political mobilisation in the Angolan civil war and he previously worked as a journalist in South Africa, Angola and the UK.

Ricardo Soares de Oliveira is Professor of the International Politics of Africa, University of Oxford. His research has covered the geopolitics of energy and international political economy, and post-civil war Angola. 



Followed by drinks reception

Organiser: SOAS Centre of African studies and International African Institute