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Title:The impact of organised crime on State social control: organised criminal groups and local governance on the Cape Flats, Cape Town, South Africa
Author:Lambrechts, Derica
Periodical:Journal of Southern African Studies (ISSN 1465-3893)
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:organized crime
local government
social control
State-society relationship
External link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03057070.2012.749060
Abstract:This study primarily investigates the power dynamics between organized crime, the State and society in order to assess the impact of organized crime on social control by the State. Using the Cape Flats community of Manenberg as a case study, this article examines the interaction of organized criminal gangs with the South African State at the level of local government to provide a descriptive analysis of the power dynamics between the local State, the community and criminal groups. It is argued that organized criminal groups act as a rival social organization and have acquired forms of social control lost by the State. As a result, the State is not regarded as the most prominent organization in Manenberg but, rather, as only one actor functioning in a system of local power dynamics. The position of actors within that system can shift and change as configurations of power change dynamically. Nor are the elements of this system necessarily in conflict with each other: State, society and organized crime can sometimes function in a mutually supportive relationship that works in favour of all three. Accordingly, new configurations of power are continually being established and reshaped. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]