Meagan Day

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Waiting in Istanbul

Waiting in Istanbul

For all that they came to symbolize during the months to follow, the protests were meant to emphasize that justice does not move at the speed of money.

Waiting is a social phenomenon. There is a politics to it: to who waits for what and for how long, and to who doesn’t, and how impatiently, and at what cost. You can tell a lot about the hierarchy of a city by observing its distribution of patience and impatience, mobility and immobility. The more concentrated wealth in an area, for example, the more taxis; the more taxis, the more traffic; the more traffic, the longer people who can’t afford cab fare are left waiting for the bus. In this network of contingencies and indirect consequences, when one person takes a shortcut another is always left in the lurch. People feel this. A sense of injustice is fundamental to the experience of waiting.

Waiting in Istanbul

Waiting in Istanbul

For all that they came to symbolize during the months to follow, the protests were meant to emphasize that justice does not move at the speed of money.

Waiting is a social phenomenon. There is a politics to it: to who waits for what and for how long, and to who doesn’t, and how impatiently, and at what cost. You can tell a lot about the hierarchy of a city by observing its distribution of patience and impatience, mobility and immobility. The more concentrated wealth in an area, for example, the more taxis; the more taxis, the more traffic; the more traffic, the longer people who can’t afford cab fare are left waiting for the bus. In this network of contingencies and indirect consequences, when one person takes a shortcut another is always left in the lurch. People feel this. A sense of injustice is fundamental to the experience of waiting.