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Land Restitution's 'Rights Communities': The District Six Case

Christiaan Beyers
Journal of Southern African Studies
Vol. 33, No. 2 (Jun., 2007), pp. 267-285
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25065196
Page Count: 19
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Land Restitution's 'Rights Communities': The District Six Case
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Abstract

This article discusses political processes and legal frameworks and discourses in the District Six case with a view to understanding the resulting patterns of group formation and mobilisation, as well as of social mobility. The land restitution process is seen as working to expand citizenship by engendering a new 'rights community' consisting of those who qualify and are empowered to claim the rights and entitlements set out in the Restitution Act. The article outlines the contours of this 'community' by examining emergent forms of social differentiation and exclusion in the context of land restitution. It is argued that in the shift from mobilising ex-residents to submit claims to settling claims and planning and implementing development, popular political participation is compromised by legal-bureaucratic procedures and technical planning imperatives.

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