The conclusion (“Countertemporality”) takes up the key present-absentee of the book, the mechanical clock, a device whose history and usage in Egypt index the main themes of the previous chapters. Using clocks to retrace the gradual and uneven emergence of an abstract sphere of homogeneous time, this conclusion examines its particular Egyptian inflections. It argues that such articulations, seen as substandard variations of European mechanical time, were what enabled the universality of the latter and its emergence as the temporality of a global singular modernity unifying historical and quotidian times, the metropole and its colonies.
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