Johannesburg: the Textures of Freedom and Its Abrogation in Post-apartehid Suburbs



The majority of South Africa’s more than 50 million inhabitants now live in cities. After centuries of white supremacist and colonial spatial planning limiting the access of black-bodied people to towns and the early precursors of cities, the end of official apartheid in 1994 saw an acceleration of the urbanisation which marked many other postcolonial societies in the twentieth century, but which in South Africa had been halted by apartheid, what Jacques Derrida once problematically called “le dernier mot du racisme” (racism’s last word).