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Reinventing urban South Africa through global-Africanisation

Article image

Mfaniseni Fana Sihlongonyane

08 July 2020

Taylor and Francis


uKESA Librarian 2

Journal article


The journal article addresses the complex relationship between globalisation and Africanisation in the context of urban restructuring in South Africa during the 1990s.


Here's a more detailed breakdown of its main points:

  • Polarisation in Literature: The existing literature often portrays globalisation and Africanisation as polar opposites, focusing on their differences rather than their interactions. This dichotomy overlooks the spaces where global and local influences intersect.
  • Glocalisation: The article introduces the concept of glocalisation, which refers to the blending of global and local elements. This perspective reveals new forms of urbanity and innovative sites of collaboration and contestation that emerge in the process of defining new urban spaces in South Africa.
  • Beyond Polar-Opposites: The paper aims to transcend the binary thinking of global versus local. It explores how local identities are shaped within the framework of global culture and how global elements are incorporated into local contexts. This interaction results in material and discursive crossovers between the two.
  • Post-Apartheid Reconstruction: The core argument is that the process of urban reconstruction in post-apartheid South Africa is driven by a political culture that integrates both global and African influences. This new culture recognises local aspirations and global orientations as co-determinants in creating urban identities.
  • Urban Identities: The article posits that in the post-apartheid era, South African urban identities are being forged through a dynamic interaction between globalisation and Africanisation. This interplay is crucial for understanding the ongoing transformation of urban spaces in the country.

In essence, the article challenges the traditional view of globalisation and Africanisation as mutually exclusive and instead highlights their interconnectedness in shaping urban development and identities in South Africa.


Abstract based directly on original source.


Website References


Built environment

Cities and towns




Economic conditions

Economic growth


Green buildings

Human settlements


Local community

Open data



South Africa



Urban design

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