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When One Becomes Two

Man–Machine Hybridization in Urban Cyclists with Broken Bikes

Lou Therese Brandner

their bicycles due to them being under repair. The research project 3 follows a qualitative approach, attempting to understand bicycle–human hybridization as a social phenomenon in depth on the basis of accounts of cyclists who are temporarily

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Bicycle Politics

Review Essay

Jennifer Bonham

J. Harry Wray, Pedal Power: The Quiet Rise of the Bicycle in American Public Life (Boulder: Paradigm Publishers, 2008)

Jeff Mapes, Pedaling Revolution: How Cyclists are Changing American Cities (Corvallis: Oregon State University Press, 2009)

Zack Furness, One Less Car: Bicycling and the Politics of Automobility (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2010)

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Is the Kingdom of Bicycles Rising Again?

Cycling, Gender, and Class in Postsocialist China

Hilda Rømer Christensen

and romantic images are linked to the central position of the bike, both as a daily means of transportation and as a symbol of Maoist modernity in the latter half of the twentieth century. The particular image of China as the “Kingdom of the Bicycles

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Bicycle Research between Bicycle Policies and Bicycle Culture

Harry Oosterhuis

After the Second World War, the bicycle was surpassed by the car as the dominant mode of individual transportation in most Western countries. Since the 1970s, however, bicycle use has again gained some support both from the general public and from governments. In the last two decades national governments and cities throughout the Western world, from Norway to Australia and the United States to Germany, as well as the European Union, have launched policy statements and programs aimed at promoting cycling. Policy documents show much optimism about the possibilities to increase the bike’s modal share in transport by means of infrastructural and social engineering. These policy plans have enhanced social scientific and traffic engineering research into bicycle use and its facilitation.

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The Appropriation of Bicycles in West Africa

Pragmatic Approaches to Sustainability

Hans Peter Hahn

Bicycles have a wide range of functions and roles in West Africa. They have vital functions for everyday necessities, but they also constitute prestige objects. The appreciation of bicycles in Africa started very early, almost simultaneously with their diffusion as consumer goods in Europe. However, the adoption of bicycles followed a specific pathway, which is explained in this article within the conceptual framework of appropriation. Cultural appropriation highlights the significant modifications of bicycles in Africa and the abandonment of some functions like braking. In spite of the technical simplifications, modified bicycles are perceived as having higher value, by virtue of their fitness for the tough roads and their increased reliability. Appropriation results in a specific “Africanized“ bicycle, which makes possible a prolonged usage. This essay argues that the “Africanized“ bicycle constitutes a model of sustainability in matters of transport, one which is not sufficiently recognized in current debates about sustainable innovations.

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The Making of a Bicycle Nation

Japan

M. William Steele

Japan is one of the great bicycle nations of the world, ranking alongside the Netherlands, Germany, and Denmark in terms of per capita bicycle ownership and use. This article reviews the history and characteristics of Japan as a bicycle nation. It examines the emergence of a distinctive bicycle culture that offered personal mobility to ordinary people in prewar Japan and traces the contribution of the bicycle to postwar Japan's social and economic development. It reviews postwar bicycle history in: the period of reconstruction and recovery (1945-1956); the period of high economic growth (1957-1973); the period of rapid motorization (1974-1991); and the period of raised environmental consciousness (1992-present). The conclusion seeks to offer reasons for the persistence of Japan's vibrant and pervasive bicycle culture.

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The Bi-Cycling Mr Hoopdriver

Counter-Sporting Victorian Reviving the Carnivalesque

Yoonjoung Choi

In much of his work, H. G. Wells consciously criticises the conservativeness of contemporary sports such as cricket and emphasises cycling as a recreational sport which contributes to the democratisation of social class and gender. This stance is apparent in Wells's first social novel, The Wheels of Chance (1896) which captures the fin-de-siècle passion for cycling but also its social impact. For Wells, Victorian team/spectacle sports such as rugby, football, horseracing, and boxing are overtly competitive, promoting gentlemen's amateur sportsmanship and masculinity. This essay argues that The Wheels of Chance, by featuring recreational cycling as the main motif and casting an unfit draper as the protagonist, is an indirect criticism of gentlemen's sporting activities. It creates a space of amusement where strict rules are shunned in favour of casual pastime, generating carnivalesque games and performances in the Bakhtinian sense. It explores the author's will to change the social order through the carnivalesque, in the ambivalent depiction of Mr Hoopdriver's bi-cycling as play.

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“I Want to Ride My Bicycle”

The 11th Annual Bicycle Film Festival

Sønke Myrda

The Bicycle Film Festival (BFF) has grown from a minor grassroots event to a global “Fest” staging urban cycling events in over two dozen cities worldwide. In its 11th year in New York City, the “BFF” New York (June 22–26, 2011) intends to provide its participants with a “weekend full of bike movies, music, art, street party and after parties,”1 before going on tour around the globe. Festival cities include Amsterdam, Athens, Lisbon, London, Los Angeles, Milan, Paris, Sao Paolo, Sydney, Taiwan, Tokyo, Vienna.

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Historiographical Needs in the Study of Bicycling Mobility in France

Francis Papon

In historical research on cycling in France, most attention has been given to the development of bicycles themselves and the industry that built them, mainly in the nineteenth century, or on cycling as a sport. Some historians have studied the bicycle as a social object. But the works dealing with cycling as a means of transport are scarce. The special double session on “Cycling History and Cycling Policies” at the 2012 annual conference of the International Association for the History of Transport, Traffic and Mobility in Madrid was an opportunity to exchange findings from various countries.

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“Hand-Me-Down Habitats”

Bicycles, Youth, and Open Space in the 1970s

Brian Frehner

An event called Bicycle Motocross, or “BMX,” debuted in the 2008 Olympic games and took place again in the 2012, 2016, and 2020 Olympics. Each race during the event involved eight competitors who balanced their bikes atop a three-story starting