Our old shoes embark on a new life in Africa. While many people believe that their used clothes donations are distributed free of charge to the needy in the Third World, the trade in second-hand clothes is actually an international business. In addition to commercial clothes collectors, sorters, and interim dealers, thousands of street dealers in Africa live off the sale of second-hand clothes and shoes.
They have to know which shoes are in fashion on the streets at the time, the various types of customers and the styles that are in demand by them, when and where these customers are most likely to be found, how to best approach them, and what they are willing to pay. This specialized expert knowledge is the basis of a successful livelihood.
The book provides ethnographic insights into the life of a group of street dealers of the Tanzanian multi-million metropolis Dar es Salaam.