New street geographies: the impact of urban governance on the mobilities of Cape Town's street youth

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    Abstract

    Street youth have been part of South Africa’s cities since the 1980s, maintaining a visible and mobile presence. Contemporary adaptations to urban governance strategies in Cape Town have resulted in management practices that are creating challenges for street youth’s lives. This paper explores these challenges which have emerged through strategies to clean up the city and are aimed at reducing youth’s visible presence on the streets. Through an examination of street youth’s lives, this paper conceptualises four ways in which their mobilities have changed, dramatically affecting their everyday practices. The paper develops theoretical understandings of street youth’s lives by identifying ‘new’ street geographies. This moves away from current conceptualisations of street children/youth as having a visible presence on the streets and rather expresses street life as hidden and marginalised, pushed into less wealthy parts of the urban landscape. This has significant implications for addressing street children/youth’s needs in policy contexts.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)556-573
    Number of pages18
    JournalUrban Studies
    Volume50
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

    Keywords

    • street children/youth
    • South Africa
    • MOBILITIES
    • urban governance

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