Anti-social bandits culture resistance and the Tsotsi subculture on the Witwatersrand during the 1940s and 1950s

Date
1990-09
Authors
Glaser, Clive
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Abstract
Witwatersrand during the 1940s and 1950s never involved themselves in "politics". Because they were almost by definition unemployed they were also marginal to the struggle between capital and labour. A study of the tsotsi subculture is therefore in danger of becoming politically irrelevant, a colourful sociological study detached from broader social power struggles. This paper attempts to offset this danger from the outset by broadening the definition of "political" to embrace culture and ideology. I will place the tsotsi subculture within the context of the struggle for cultural hegemony in South Africa. Not only did the tsotsi subculture occupy a significant niche within the cultural fabric of urban South Africa, but, I will argue, it represented a powerful counter-force to the cultural hegemonic status quo. (1)
Description
African Studies Seminar series. Paper presented September, 1990
Keywords
Urban youth. South Africa. Witwatersrand. Social conditions , Gangs. South Africa. Witwatersrand , Gangs. Political activity. South Africa. Witwatersrand
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