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Urban mosquitoes, situational publics, and the pursuit of interspecies separation in Dar es Salaam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Ann Horton Kelly, Javier Lezaun

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)368–383
Number of pages25
Issue number2
Early online date25 Apr 2014
Accepted/In press25 Apr 2014
E-pub ahead of print25 Apr 2014
Published1 May 2014


King's Authors


Recent work in anthropology points to the recognition of multispecies entanglements as the grounds for a more ethical politics. In this article, we examine efforts to control mosquitoes in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, as an example of the laborious tasks of disentanglement that characterize public health interventions. The mosquito surveillance and larval elimination practices of an urban malaria control program offer an opportunity to observe how efforts to create distance between species relate to the physical and civic textures of the city. Seen in the particular context of the contemporary African metropolis, the work of public health appears less a matter of control than a commitment to constant urban maintenance and political mobilization.

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