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Machines as the measure of women: colonial irony in a Cape to Cairo automobile journey, 1930

Journal Article


Abstract


  • Machines as the measure of women: colonial irony in a Cape to Cairo automobile

    journey, 1930 Georgine Clarsen

    Histories of transport have been notably deficient in considering women as

    competent technological actors, but, in seeking to correct that elision, feminist

    scholars have argued that adding women to those histories does much more

    than merely expand established narratives. Instead, an analysis of womens

    engagement with transport and travel offers an analytics of the power relations

    that inhere within those practices and allows us to consider the standard masculinist

    stories in new ways. Georgine Clarsen explores some of the intimate links between

    gender, technological modernity and colonialism by focusing on white womens

    transcontinental travel in Africa at the end of the 1920s, when assumptions of

    British colonial and industrial superiority were being challenged and American

    economic supremacy was replacing the old empires of Europe. She focuses on

    a journey taken by two women who, at the height of the Great Depression,

    drove an aging British car from Cape Town, through Africa and back to the

    factory where it had been built. The story the women told about their trip

    provides a fresh perspective on some of the disavowed anxieties that colonisers

    carried with them, and depicts gender, race, class, nation and empire as performative

    social categoriesshifting, unstable and thoroughly imbued with changes in

    the global automobile industry at that historical moment. Key words Women

    drivers, Cape to Cairo, Automobile adventure, Transcontinental motoring,

    Colonialism, Car culture.

UOW Authors


  •   Clarsen, Georgine (external author)

Publication Date


  • 2008

Citation


  • Clarsen, G. W. (2008). Machines as the measure of women: colonial irony in a Cape to Cairo automobile journey, 1930. Journal of Transport History, 29 (1), 44-63.

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-57749138053

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/artspapers/810

Has Global Citation Frequency


Number Of Pages


  • 19

Start Page


  • 44

End Page


  • 63

Volume


  • 29

Issue


  • 1

Place Of Publication


  • United Kingdom

Abstract


  • Machines as the measure of women: colonial irony in a Cape to Cairo automobile

    journey, 1930 Georgine Clarsen

    Histories of transport have been notably deficient in considering women as

    competent technological actors, but, in seeking to correct that elision, feminist

    scholars have argued that adding women to those histories does much more

    than merely expand established narratives. Instead, an analysis of womens

    engagement with transport and travel offers an analytics of the power relations

    that inhere within those practices and allows us to consider the standard masculinist

    stories in new ways. Georgine Clarsen explores some of the intimate links between

    gender, technological modernity and colonialism by focusing on white womens

    transcontinental travel in Africa at the end of the 1920s, when assumptions of

    British colonial and industrial superiority were being challenged and American

    economic supremacy was replacing the old empires of Europe. She focuses on

    a journey taken by two women who, at the height of the Great Depression,

    drove an aging British car from Cape Town, through Africa and back to the

    factory where it had been built. The story the women told about their trip

    provides a fresh perspective on some of the disavowed anxieties that colonisers

    carried with them, and depicts gender, race, class, nation and empire as performative

    social categoriesshifting, unstable and thoroughly imbued with changes in

    the global automobile industry at that historical moment. Key words Women

    drivers, Cape to Cairo, Automobile adventure, Transcontinental motoring,

    Colonialism, Car culture.

UOW Authors


  •   Clarsen, Georgine (external author)

Publication Date


  • 2008

Citation


  • Clarsen, G. W. (2008). Machines as the measure of women: colonial irony in a Cape to Cairo automobile journey, 1930. Journal of Transport History, 29 (1), 44-63.

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-57749138053

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/artspapers/810

Has Global Citation Frequency


Number Of Pages


  • 19

Start Page


  • 44

End Page


  • 63

Volume


  • 29

Issue


  • 1

Place Of Publication


  • United Kingdom