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Who control the streets? Crime, 'communities' and the state in post-apartheid Johannesburg

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Chapter Summary

The most effective means of controlling and preventing crime is the reestablishment of effective means of community and social control. In post-apartheid Johannesburg, the issue of control over public spaces revolved around crime and insecurity. The demise of the apartheid regime and the end of South Africas international isolation has accelerated socio-economic transformations, in particular the shift towards a post-modern economy. Community policing and Zero tolerance approach are considered the paramount form of community participation into the production of security. The broken window theory (Wilson 1982), which states that the slightest sign of urban decay or maintenance neglect in the public space is an enhancement for crime, reflecting the abandonment of collective control on the neighbourhood, has been widely adopted. Finally, public authorities are not really combating the principle of privatisation of control over public space-neither in the centres, through the encouragement of City Improvement Districts, nor in residential areas.

Keywords: apartheid; broken window theory; community policing; Crime; Johannesburg; South Africa; Zero tolerance



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