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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:'A disciplining method for holding standards down': how the World Bank planned Africa's slums
Author:Alexander, AmandaISNI
Periodical:Review of African Political Economy (ISSN 0305-6244)
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:housing policy
World Bank
Abstract:This article examines the World Bank's attempts to frame the relationship between States, markets, and citizens through its urban assistance programmes during the 1970s and 1980s. Drawing on internal memoranda, mission reports, and staff reviews, the article traces the bank's arguments about the ideal role of the State in housing and service provision. Over this period, the World Bank encouraged governments to withdraw from providing public housing directly and to act instead as an 'enabler' of market forces, with lasting economic and political consequences. The article concludes with a focus on South Africa in the early 1990s, when the World Bank (after two decades of practice in promoting privatized land and housing markets) counselled the African National Congress on its postapartheid policies. In the years since, these policies have resulted in explosive confrontations with civil-society activists who remain committed to alternative visions of the role of the State in housing and service provision. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]