Cover

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Title Page, Series Page, Copyright

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pp. i-iv

Contents

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pp. v-vi

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Preface

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pp. vii-x

In Invisible Cities, Italo Calvino recounts the story of a Venetian traveler, Marco Polo, who entertains the aged Tartar emperor Kublai Khan with apocryphal tales of the cities he has visited in his travels around the vast empire. In time, it gradually becomes evident that each of the fantastic places...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-xiv

Johannesburg is a habit that has proven impossible to break. From the first time I set eyes on this strange place in June 1977, I was immediately overwhelmed by the compact density of the downtown built environment, the sheer verticality of its monumental buildings, the boundless horizontal sprawl of its...

List of Abbreviations and Nicknames

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pp. xv-xviii

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Introduction: The Untamed City of Fragments

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pp. 1-14

Johannesburg is both a material entity, identified and defined by its geographical boundaries, and an imagined place, or, to use a phrase coined by the urban theorist Robert Park (1925, 1) a “state of mind.” It is a restless, unsettled city whose own self-identity has always revolved around its vitality...

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1. Social Justice and the Rights to the City

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pp. 15-38

In linking geographical mobility with contemporary globalization, Zygmunt Bauman (1998, 77) has declared, “Nowadays we are all on the move.” In distinguishing between different groups of mobile travelers, Bauman divides people on the move into affluent tourists and impoverished vagabonds, that...

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2. Ruin and Regeneration Intertwined

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pp. 39-58

As a general rule, cities are always experienced in space but studied in time. In other words, cities historicize space. As sites where the duration and depredation of objects, persons, and memories take place in time, cities are haunted by their own histories. In this way, they not only stretch across time but also...

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3. The Fixed and Flexible City

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pp. 59-89

As an enduring testimonial to its original city planners, the spatial morphology of the greater Johannesburg metropolitan region has been more or less a dismal failure. From its earliest frontier days as a rapidly expanding boomtown at the epicenter of the thriving gold-mining industry through...

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4. Disposable People at the Peri-Urban Fringe

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pp. 90-124

In late June 2001 thousands of landless squatters seized a barren piece of vacant land at Elandsfontein farm close to a suburb called Bredell, outside of Kempton Park on the eastern outskirts of Johannesburg.1 The homeless squatters who came to this forlorn place near the Johannesburg International Airport...

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5. The Spatial Dynamics of Real Estate Capitalism

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pp. 125-153

Like other aspiring world-class cities, Johannesburg after apartheid has been subjected to a steady stream of regeneration efforts designed to breathe new life into dead spaces of the urban landscape. Borrowing from planning motifs in vogue in North America and Europe, city builders in Johannesburg have...

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6. The Struggle for Survival in the Inner City

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pp. 154-188

In the Johannesburg central city large-scale property has remained primarily in the hands of the old white monopolies—prominent mining houses, banking establishments, insurance companies, pension and provident funds, and real estate holding companies.1 In contrast, the streets, pavements, and public...

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7. Revitalization and Displacement in the Inner City

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pp. 189-224

Sometimes seemingly prosaic and unremarkable events, when looked at retrospectively, can be seen to signal a turning point in public perceptions and attitudes.1 One such pivotal moment may have occurred on a particularly balmy June evening in 2004, as dozens of Jo’burg’s new elite—representatives...

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8. The Banality of Indifferent Urbanism

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pp. 225-236

On September 21, 2004, Simon Magaliso Radebe, a fifty-seven-year-old homeless man, collapsed on President Street in downtown Johannesburg.1 The security guards who discovered him lying in the gutter realized that he required immediate medical attention, and they quickly radioed Johannesburg...

References

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pp. 237-256

Index

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pp. 257-261