• SmallBanner 01
  • SmallBanner 02
  • SmallBanner 03

Secondary Cities in West Africa: Urbanity, Power, and Aspirations.


Year published: 2021
Categories: Journal Article
URL Link: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12132-021-09449-1

Author / Authors:

  • Ammann, C.
  • Sanogo, A.
  • Heer, B


Urban Forum. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12132-021-09449-1


This article claims space for secondary cities in urban studies. It criticizes that scientists tend to study urban life in metropolises and, hence, do not represent urban life in its full diversity. In reality, the majority of the worlds’ urban dwellers live in secondary cities; therefore, research on urbanity should reflect this fact. The article argues against simple approaches to secondary cities, such as defining them based on a single quantitative variable like population size. It rather proposes that anthropological research has a unique potential to reveal the urban dwellers’ relational and situational perceptions of, and perspectives towards, secondary cities. The paper puts this approach into practice by examining two West African secondary cities: Kankan in Guinea and Bouaké in Côte d’Ivoire.


  • Journal Article