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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Murder and the city
Author:Gillespie, Kelly
Periodical:Anthropology Southern Africa (ISSN 2332-3264)
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:urban areas
Abstract:Henri Lefebvre's 'The Urban Revolution' makes a claim for the importance of seeing the whole urban form in our analyses of cities. He argues that we too often get trapped into a view of the urban that prioritizes 'fragments' of the city to the detriment of their critical understanding in terms of the whole urban condition. This essay takes the technique of the 'murder rate' as one such fragmentary reading of the urban, a technique which has the potential to see the city as a whole, but which most often works reductively to particularise violent neighbourhoods for correction and intervention. Taking the city of Cape Town in South Africa as its example, the essay argues that for murder to be properly understood, the murder rate should be the starting point of accounting for the distribution of violence across the whole city, including the histories of the production of that distribution, and not as a way to pathologise the township as a place of particular and specific violence. Bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]