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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Urbanisation and peri-urbanisation in Luanda: a geopolitical and socio-spatial perspective from the late colonial period to the present
Author:Leiria Viegas, SílviaISNI
Periodical:Journal of Southern African Studies (ISSN 1465-3893)
Geographic term:Angola
Subjects:urban development
urban planning
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/03057070.2016.1192893
Abstract:Luanda has experienced rapid urban expansion, especially since the mid 20th century, due to growing migration from the countryside and intensive demographic growth. The city has been transformed by actions undertaken by the state and/or the private sector with government incentives, and by the people in their everyday lives. This forging of the city is characterised by significant territorial fragmentation and an enormous level of social exclusion, affecting particularly the most deprived social groups. The purpose of this article is, first, to systematise the geopolitical and socio-spatial changes taking place in the Angolan capital according to three major periods - late colonial (1948-1975), postcolonial amid civil war (1975-2002) and postcolonial at peace (2002 to the present) - and, second, to formulate theoretical considerations based on the work of scholars such as Henri Lefebvre, Manuel Castells, Michel Foucault and David Harvey, while taking into account dominant practices inspired by the 'right to the city' concept. Considering the ineffectiveness of most state-led 'top-down' interventions in reducing inequality and socio-spatial exclusion, and in the interest of pursuing new and unexplored 'bottom-up' methodologies, I will argue that, by means of the broader democratisation of governmental decision-making, and with the active participation of the population in drawing up the urban and housing strategies of the Angolan state, it may be possible to formulate alternative policies that can reduce some of the socio-spatial imbalances in Luanda, and consequently improve the quality of urban life. Doing so may create the conditions required to involve most of the population in the construction of full citizenship. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]