Behind the Mask: Getting to Grips with Crime and Violence in South Africa 0796919585, 9780796919588

383 36 3MB

English Pages 332 [230] Year 2000

Report DMCA / Copyright


Recommend Papers

Behind the Mask: Getting to Grips with Crime and Violence in South Africa
 0796919585, 9780796919588

  • 0 0 0
  • Like this paper and download? You can publish your own PDF file online for free in a few minutes! Sign Up
File loading please wait...
Citation preview

Contents I INTRODUCTION TO THE PUBLIC HEALTH APPROACH Chapter 1: Crime, violence and public health - Alex Butchart and Tony Emmett Violence prevention and public health Major characteristics of the public health approach References

Free download from

Chapter 2: Violence and violence prevention in South Africa: A sociological and historical perspective - Alex Butchart, Martin Terre Blanche, Brandon Hamber and Mohamed Seedat Violence in twentieth-century South Africa: A Foucauldean perspective Basic instincts and moral orthopaedics: Violence as a psychodynamic phenomenon The new sovereignty: State violence and the armed struggle The New Discipline I: Caring for victims of violence The New Discipline II: Violence prevention Conclusion References II CASE STUDIES Chapter 3: Trauma epidemiology data: Application in the prevention of injury and crime -J. W. van der Spuy and S. Marais Summary Introduction In quest of solutions National Trauma Research Programme Discussion Recommendations 5

References Chapter 4: Soul City - Lee Rocha-Silva and Graeme Hendricks Summary Introduction Background and context Aims and underlying principles, assumptions or theory Overall strategy and specific projects

Free download from

Structures Lessons learnt Conclusions References Chapter 5: Centre for Peace Action - Mariana Steyn and Graeme Hendricks Summary Introduction Origin of the Centre for Peace Action Aims and goals Assumptions, theory or model used to construct the programme Programmes Structures Contextual and programme changes Conclusions References Chapter 6: The Parent Centre - Alex Butchart and Graeme Hendricks Summary


Introduction Origins of the Parent Centre: Identifying missed intervention opportunities The Parent Centre's evidence for action Programmes Structures Affiliations, funding and budget Research and evaluation

Free download from

Conclusions References Chapter 7: Metrorail: Commuter Safety Project -Alex Butchart Summary Introduction Origins of the commuter safety system: from policing to public health Main features of the rail commuter safety system Evaluation Organisation, budget and legal aspects Conclusions References Chapter 8: Kwazulu-Natal Programme for Survivors of Violence - Tony Emmett and Craig Higson-Smith Summary Background Theoretical foundations and models of intervention Schools programme Youth programme Women and children programme 7

Individual and family counselling and referral Advocacy and awareness raising Structures and funding Future prospects and vision Evaluation Lessons References

Free download from

III AN INTEGRATED APPROACH TO CRIME AND VIOLENCE PREVENTION IN SOUTH AFRICA Chapter 9: Community responses to crime -Tony Emmett, Alex Butchart, Gina Saayman and Royal Lekoba Violence prevention strategies in Slovo Park and Mandela Square informal settlements Crime and violence prevention strategies in Meyerspark Discussion Citizens and communities in crime control References Chapter 10: Developing a model for crime and injury prevention in South Africa - Tony Emmett Agent-host-environment model Haddon's phases of injury model Precede-proceed model Model for safety promotion Proposed model for safety promotion in South Africa References Chapter 11: Addressing the underlying causes of crime and violence in South Africa - Tony Emmett


A scientific (knowledge-based) approach to crime prevention Evaluating prevention strategies A comprehensive approach to crime and violence prevention Focusing on social and institutional issues Social disintegration and crime Crime, violence and political transition Crime, development and social capital Multi-sectoral interventions

Free download from

Building social capital Getting to grips with crime and violence in South Africa: Some basic principles and guidelines References


One Introduction to the public health approach Chapter 1 Crime, violence and public health Alex Butchart and Tony Emmett

Free download from

This book is about crime and violence in South Africa, and about how public health and the social sciences can be used to understand and help prevent these problems. At first glance, it may seem strange that a book on crime and violence deals with these challenging issues from a public health perspective. After all, crime and violence are problems for the police and the courts, while public health is something that has to do with attempts to prevent AIDS or reduce the number of cigarettes that people smoke each day. Why, then, should public health, crime and violence be brought together? What can this combination contribute that has not already been tried and found wanting in our efforts to rid society of crime and violence? In this introductory chapter we attempt to answer these questions by setting out some key definitions and describing the principles of public health as applied to violence and crime prevention. Concrete examples of the public health approach at work in the prevention of crime and violence are provided in the chapters that follow. In the concluding chapter the lessons that emerge from these examples, and from local and international research, are drawn together into a model for the prevention of crime and violence in South Africa. This book will probably disappoint anyone who expects from it a simple solution or "quick fix" for crime and violence in South Africa. The roots of crime and violence are so embedded in our everyday social relationships and in the complex patterns of inequality in our society, that quick fixes can treat only the symptoms, but not the underlying causes. Public health, with its emphasis on using scientific methods for identifying and dealing with these underlying causes, is a framework for medium to long-term prevention. Public health is therefore a resource for crime and violence prevention that operates together with, rather than against, the essential short-term measures applied by the police and the courts. In the end, successfully coming to grips with crime and violence in South Africa will include both short-term measures and long-term strategies, and will involve science working for people and society in the formulation of shared solutions to a shared set of problems.

Violence prevention and public health Until now - in South Africa and the world over - the solutions to crime and violence that have emerged in the popular mind and the actions of political leaders have been oriented almost exclusively towards the principles of retribution, deterrence and incapacitation. Yet, these criminal justice strategies have not been effective in reversing what appears to be a trend towards an increasing incidence of violence in all its forms. Both globally and locally, this failure has provoked increasing involvement on the part of the public health sector. Building on the successes it has achieved in preventing disease and reducing accidental or non-intentional injuries, public health 12

brings to the crime and violence problem two key elements that are underdeveloped in traditional responses. First, a multi disciplinary scientific approach to defining the problem of violence, analysing its causes, and designing interventions; and second, an explicit focus on prevention. Public health thus provides a preventive counterpoint to the more reactive, deterrence-oriented approach of criminal justice. Globally, the move to view violence as a public health priority is receiving strong support from major international agencies such as the World Health Organisation, and important national public health bodies such as the US Centers for Disease Control, the Brazilian Ministry of Health, and public health agencies elsewhere in Latin America, the United Kingdom and Europe. South Africa is well-positioned to learn and benefit from these initiatives, and to make its own unique contribution to the public health science of violence prevention and safety promotion.

Free download from

Public health as the science of prevention Public health operates far beyond the domain of clinics, nurses and doctors usually associated with the idea of health. It is more concerned with all aspects of the twoway exchange of matter, energy and information between people and their human, social and physical environments, for it is through such exchange that the health status of individuals and groups is determined. In managing this exchange, public health employs a range of methods aimed at altering individual behaviour and community lifestyle, reducing the social and political context of harmful beliefs and practices, and negating dangers in the physical environment. Public health is therefore a profoundly social activity with powerful implications for individuals and communities, as conveyed by Last's definition of public health as ... the combination of science, skills and beliefs that are directed to the maintenance and improvement of the health of all the people through collective or social action. The programmes, services, and institutions involved emphasise the prevention of disease and the health needs of the population as a whole. Public health activities change with changing technology and social values, but the goals remain the same: to reduce the amount of disease, premature death and disease-produced discomfort and disability in the population (Last, 1988:107). Implicit in this definition are three key elements: •

First, public health addresses health not at the level of the individual, but at the level of the entire population. Where clinical medicine treats disease within a person, public health aims to prevent problems before they occur by working at the aggregate level. It does so by working with issues such as the social norms shaping the acceptability of violence, the access of communities to adequate sanitation, and the protection of communities from such harmful by-products of economic activity as pollution, firearms and alcohol.

Second, public health interventions frequently target major social processes (such as poverty, violence and substance abuse) which are beyond the ability of a single community or a single discipline to alter.


They therefore draw upon the resources of multiple disciplines (e.g. psychology, building science, policing and medicine), and many different social sectors (e.g. professionals, church groups, community residents), •

Third, in order to create the information needed to achieve its aims, public health requires methods that can document and define problems at the level of the population in ways that reveal to other disciplines where they can intervene to prevent the problem.

Free download from

Box 1.1: The public health burden of violence In 1990 violence accounted for 4,1% of the total global disease burden, and by the year 2020 it is estimated that this will increase to 7,1% (Ad Hoc Committee, 1996). In 1990 interpersonal violence, self-directed violence, and war-related injures each made about equal contributions to the global burden of violence. Projections for 2020 anticipate a: greater increase in the burden attributable to interpersonal violence and: war-related injuries than self-directed violence. In 1990, males lost around 35 million DALYs to violence as against 21 million for females. Projections for 2020 indicate that violence-related DALYs for males will increase by 80% to 64 million, and for females: by 66% to 35 million. In 1990, the burden of global disease associated with self-directed violence and war were only slightly greater for males then females, but males lost about 3.5 times as many DALYs to interpersonal violence as females (Ad Hoc Committee, 1996). There is substantial regional vacation in the global burden: of violence, and subSaharan African features prominently as the region projected to have the largest violence-related burden of disease and the steepest increases in violence-related DALYs between 1990: and 2020. In 1990 the burden of violence was relatively greater in Sub-Saharan Africa, China, Latin America/Caribbean, the Middle Eastern crescent, and countries with formerly socialist economies than in other world regions (Ad Hac Committee; 1996). The burden of interpersonal violence was elevated relative to other regions ; in Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America/Caribbean, and countries: with formerly socialist economies, while the burden of self-directed: violence was relatively greater in China, countries with formerly socialist: economies,: and countries with established market economies: The burden of war was particularly high in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle Eastern Crescent, and countries with formerly socialist economies. Regional projections for 2020 are that the global burden of violence will became more concentrated in Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle Eastern crescent, mainly due to increases in the burden of war-related injuries. there. The occurrence of civil and international war has been shown to be a risk factor for post-war interpersonal violence (Gartner, 1990),.and the burden of interpersonal violence is therefore expected to continue to be relatively greater in Sub-Saharan Africa. The burden of self-directed violence , is expected to increase modestly in all regions except for the former socialist economies and established market economies, where it is expected to remain constant. These projections of the global health burden of violence in 2020 assume that the ongoing secular increases in the rate of interpersonal violence will continue (Ad Hoc Committee, 1996).:These increases appear to be associated with urbanisation, rapid economic development, and overcrowding, and are enhanced by behavioural and environmental risk factors such as drug trafficking, firearm availability, and exposure to the violence of others. Increases in the burden of war-related injuries appear: to 14

be driven mainly by demographic and economic change, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa (Collier & Hoeffler, 1998; Easterly, 1999). Although it is not yet possible to estimate the, relative contribution of violence to South Africa's overall disease burden, national injury surveillance data for the first quarter of 1999 showed that homicide accounted for 47,1% and suicide for 8,0% of all injury-related deaths tracked by the system. Deaths resulting from transport accidents, by contrast, accounted for just under 25% of all deaths (Peden & Butchart, 1999:333): Emerging data for non-fatal injuries seen in state hospitals during mid1999 suggest a similar predominance of violence-related cases. Violence accounted for the largest proportion of non-fatal injuries (ranging from: 40% to nearly 70%) in all provinces except for the Northern Province, where traffic-related injuries were most prevalent (Matzopoulos, 2000;6).

Free download from

Relevance of crime and violence to public health Violence is a major contributor to premature death, disability, and injury. Interpersonal violence, suicidal behaviour, and acts of war all contribute to the global toll. The World Health Organisation's Ad Hoc Committee on health and research (1996) estimates that in 1990 one in every 12 years of healthy life lost throughout the world was attributable to violence, and that by 2020 this will rise to one in every eight years of healthy life lost. Moreover, the committee projects that the proportion of disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) lost to violence will increase from 4,1% in 1990 to 7,1% in 2020. Alongside its direct impact on health, violence has indirect effects that diminish quality of life and the ability to improve social and economic conditions. Violence impedes economic development by discouraging foreign investment, destabilising national labour and industry, discouraging tourism, and provoking the emigration of skilled citizens. Violence fragments family and community ties, and violence at home, on the street, and in schools disrupts education and the provision of basic health and social services. The public health vision suggests that in dealing with violence societies must shift from reacting to the problem after it occurs to a focus on changing the social, behavioural, and environmental factors that produce violence in the first place. Public health seeks to empower people and their communities to view and respond to violence not as inevitable, but as a problem that can be understood and changed. There are therefore a number of reasons why violence has attracted the attention and interest of public health practitioners. Firstly, epidemiologists recognised that injury (including those injuries resulting from violence) posed a major threat to health, especially in relation to potential years of life lost. The end of the 20th century has seen a remarkable rise in the burden of death and disability from injury, particularly in the developing countries. Not only have injuries begun to rival infectious diseases in the burden they inflict on developing countries, but it is predicted that by the year 2020 injuries will have equalled the impact of all communicable diseases world-wide. However, in spite of their increasing importance as a cause of mortality and morbidity, the epidemic of injuries has been described as "among the most neglect problems of the late 20th century" (Ad Hoc Committee, 1996). Social and opportunity costs associated with violence and injuries include loss of life, limb or functioning, absenteeism (lost days of work or school), costs of emergency and acute medical care, long-term care, rehabilitation, lost work and wages, disability and reduced productivity. Even without considering human suffering and 15

loss of quality-of-life, studies suggest that the economic costs of injury far outweigh the costs of most injury prevention programmes and environmental safety provisions (Max & Price, 1993; Greenwood et al., 1996).

Free download from

In the light of international and local evidence that low-income and middle-income countries and the poorest populations within these countries bear the main brunt of the injury epidemic, it is clear that injury control is not simply a health problem, but also a development problem. Moreover, given the success of public health approaches in reducing unintentional injuries such as traffic injuries and injuries in the home, it became apparent that the methods used in the prevention of unintentional injuries could be applied and adapted to dealing with intentional injuries such as violence and suicide. Secondly, epidemiologists noted that the criminal justice approach was not very effective in dealing with violence among intimates and family members, partly because such violence was often not reported to the police. In many cases it was health practitioners who came into contact with victims of domestic and intimate violence rather than the police. This situation had clear implications for the identification/monitoring of violence and for the development of appropriate responses to such violence. It was also apparent that intimate and acquaintance violence accounted for a large proportion of the total deaths and injuries resulting from violence. For example, in the United States in 1992/93, women were more likely to be victims of nonfatal violence by someone they knew (78%) than by a stranger (23%). On the other hand, male victims were about as likely to be victimised by a stranger (49%) as by someone they knew (51%) (US Department of Justice, 1998). Thirdly, public health practitioners realised that their methods and models could complement existing criminal justice approaches. By addressing the same set of problems from a different disciplinary base and orientation, the possibility of developing innovative approaches to these problems could be increased. Roth and Moore (1995:6-7) identify the following themes linking public health to problems of violence: • •

Violence is a threat to a community's health as well as to its social order. Public health and medical personnel often see violence that goes unreported to criminal justice agencies.

Preventing violence and reducing its damaging effects requires attention to victims and witnesses of violence, as well as perpetrators.

Epidemiological methods can be useful in measuring overall levels and patterns of violence and in identifying factors that correlate with the risk of violence.

In seeking to reduce violence and its consequences, the emphasis should be on prevention rather than amelioration.

Many opportunities for preventing violence do not depend upon controlling or rehabilitating perpetrators.


It is significant that criminologists have also become interested in the approaches and methods of public health and that more recent writings on crime prevention have begun to incorporate some of the terminology, approaches and emphases developed by public health.

Major characteristics of the public health approach

Free download from

The public health approach is outlined in Figure 1.1. It consists of four steps: (1)

Problem definition, which is usually accomplished through ongoing descriptive epidemiological surveillance from health facilities, serial population-based studies using household surveys, and the use of measures to determine the economic and social costs of violence and injuries.


Risk factor identification, which involves establishing the risk and resilience factors that distinguish between high and low risk individuals and groups, using methods such as case-control studies and qualitative investigations.


Development and testing of pilot interventions, which involves the marketing of implementable risk factor research and assistance to applied violence and injury prevention workers in using such research to design testable interventions and evaluate them.


Implementation of interventions and ongoing measurement of effectiveness, which involves advocacy and lobbying for the application of interventions known to be effective. It also involves linking the target populations back to the problem definition stage and


Free download from

Figure 1.1: The public health approach to violence and injury prevention

(From: Mercy JA, Rosenberg ML, Powell KE, Broome V, Roper WL. (1993). Public health policy for preventing violence. Health Affairs, 12(4): 7-26.) monitoring their effectiveness at the aggregate level of the population, both in terms of reducing incidence levels and in respect of cost-benefit analyses. Although there are differing views on the essential features of the public health approach, the following characteristics can be highlighted: •

a multidisciplinary and intersectoral approach to problem solving

an emphasis on risk factors

a focus on agents, hosts and environments

evidence-led prevention design, implementation and evaluation

an emphasis on the involvement of civil society in identifying and solving problems

Multidisciplinary and intersectoral approach Contrary to popular belief, the criminal justice system is not the primary contact point between victims of violence and the authorities. Research on non-fatal violent injuries among Johannesburg township residents showed that for every victim of violence reporting to the police there was at least one more seen only by health care workers. For victims treated outside of formal health care systems, there were two 18

victims of violence for every one reporting to the police (Kruger, Butchart, Seedat & Gilchrist, 1999:403). Since victimisation is itself an important predisposing factor for the perpetration of violence, any attempt to deal with the problem of violence should therefore include close interdisciplinary collaboration between the health and criminal justice sectors. Added to this argument for a multidisciplinary approach is the recognition that effective prevention strategies at the level of the community require the integrated actions of numerous other disciplines with the potential to alter such predisposing factors as poverty, overcrowding, substance abuse, weapon availability, unemployment, attitudes to gender, and child-rearing practices. A multidisciplinary approach requires the redefinition of violence as a problem that is not solely the responsibility of the criminal justice system. It is also essential that the occurrence of violence within the population be described in ways that encourage the participation of different scientific disciplines and the public at large. This rationale underlies the public health definition of violence. (See Box 1.2, below.)

Free download from

Risk factors for violence and unintentional injuries Fundamental to its understanding of violence as a preventable problem is the public health focus on risk factors. Risk factors are individual tendencies and characteristics, social and ecological factors, products, and aspects of the physical environment that enhance the likelihood of a person or group engaging in violence or becoming a victim of violence. The strategy is to identify these risk factors through descriptive and analytic research, and disable them through an appropriate combination of educational, enforcement and environmental modification strategies. Among the categories of risk already identified are the following: 1

Individual characteristics

Males are far more likely to be victims and perpetrators of violence than females, and for both sexes the likelihood of violent involvement increases sharply around the age of 15 and remains high until the mid-30s. Factors such as low academic achievement, poor social and interpersonal skills, cognitive impairment, and exposure to violence and depressive illness have all been shown to contribute in varying degrees to the different types of violence. 2

Social factors

Social factors implicated in the occurrence of violence include early developmental experiences and family-functioning styles such as low emotional bonding, punitive and inconsistent styles of discipline, and the parental modelling of violence as a solution to interpersonal problems. At the community and neighbourhood level, population transience, crowding or social isolation, and a negative social identity may contribute to violence. Macro-social and cultural influences include urbanisation and the decay of traditional social structures, economic inequality, political oppression and normative standards that condone the use of physical force as a means of domination and control. 3

Physical determinants

War may be related to critical dimensions of the ecology such as climate, availability of arable land and access to water. The availability of dangerous products such as firearms, alcohol and drugs substantially increases the likelihood and severity of interpersonal and self-directed violence, Aspects of the built environment important in determining violence include the amount of defensible space, the presence or 19

absence of barriers that channel people's movement through space, and the physical appearance of a neighbourhood or community. Flowing from its analysis of risk factors is the public health recognition that many risk factors for violence are shared by non-intentional injury categories. For example, alcohol misuse is a major risk for transport-related injuries; individual characteristics have been implicated in a variety of occupational injuries; and injuries occurring in the home are substantially higher in economically deprived and overcrowded communities. However, while it is in many cases possible to distinguish between intentional and unintentional injuries, intentionality cannot always be established, a problem that is especially acute in respect of injuries to children and women. For these reasons and because intentional and unintentional injuries share a common surveillance system, public health views violence and unintentional injuries as one set of problems that should be responded to from within an integrated prevention framework.

Free download from

Box 1.2: The public health definition of violence The notion of violence subsumes different kinds of harmful behaviour, and is a highly subjective and emotive term. What is normal, non-violent behaviour for one individual or group may be considered outright violence by another. Especially where violence is considered in relation to gender-entrenched power imbalances or to interethnic struggles, these multiple perspectives have the potential to themselves become sources of violent disagreement, and to divide different sectors, scientific disciplines, and communities along the lines of their perceptions. Science-based preventive efforts should therefore anchor themselves in a terminology of violence that minimises these emotive connotations; as provided by the following definition of violence. Developed by the WHO Task Force on Violence and Health (WHO,1996), this definition facilitates scientific measurement of the problem and -encompasses the different common understandings of the meaning of violence: Violence is the intentional, threatened, or actual use of physical force or power against oneself, another person, or against a group: or community, that either results in or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, maldevelopment, or deprivation: The definition includes a broad range of behaviours and social actions. In addition to defining violence, it is necessary to classify specific forms of violence, since each type has a distinct pattern of risk and consequences with important implications for prevention. While at present there is no broadly accepted typology of violence, the WHO Task Force's (WHO, 1996) classification provides a useful reference point. (1)

Interpersonal violence. Interpersonal violence encompasses violent: behaviours that occur between individuals, but are not planned by any social or political groups in which they participate. It occurs in many forms, and can be grouped into three categories according to the victim-perpetrator relationship: family and intimate violence (e.g. child abuse), violence among acquaintances (e.g. in a social setting between "friends"), and stranger violence (e.g. homicide by a perpetrator unknown to the victim).


Self-directed violence. Self-directed violence involves intentional and harmful behaviours directed at oneself. Suicide represents the most severe type of selfinflicted violence. Other types of self-inflicted violence include suicide attempts, 20

and behaviours where the intent is self-destructive, but not lethal (e.g: selfmutilation).

Free download from


Organised violence. Organised violence is violent behaviour planned to achieve the specific objectives of a social or political group. It includes political violence involving carefully executed efforts to violently intimidate an opposing political. faction. Genital mutilation of women and men in the name of religious and cultural rites of passage might also be considered a form of organised violence: As a last example, war is the most highly organised form of violence as it is often waged in a strictly regimented manner by military organisations specifically trained in undertaking violence.

It is of major interest that a very similar emphasis on crime prevention is becoming evident in more conventional approaches to criminology. In what is arguably the most comprehensive and wide-ranging review of crime prevention yet attempted, Sherman,1997c:24) stress the importance of "comprehensive risk factor strategies". This is not only because "the scientific evidence supports this approach", but also because it helps to focus attention "on the specific neighbourhoods in which serious crime is most heavily concentrated-not just on the cities in which those neighbourhoods are located": The connection of policing to risk factors is the most powerful conclusion reached from three decades of research. ... Community policing without a clear focus on crime risk factors generally shows no effect on crime. But directed patrols, proactive arrests and problem solving at high-crime "hot spots" have shown substantial evidence of crime prevention. Police can prevent robbery, disorder, gun violence, drunk driving and domestic violence, but only by using certain methods under certain conditions (Sherman, 1996d:1).

Victims, perpetrators and contexts What is commonly overlooked is that within the public health approach, the focus on risk factors places equal emphasis on offenders and victims. Rather than placing the emphasis on perpetrators, as the criminal justice system does, the public health perspective approaches the issues of crime and injury holistically. Moreover, because the public health approach emerged from a medical background, it has a primary interest in the patient or host of the disease or injury. This emphasis on the host or victim is balanced, however, with a concern for the agent (the disease or agent that inflicts the injury and the environment or context in which the injury occurs. Risks 1

are associated with each of these three factors.

This holistic approach finds support among criminologists who emphasise the importance of focusing on the victims of crime. For example, Camerer (1996) observes that until recently little attention has been paid to victims of crime in South Africa, and argues for a shift of focus from the actions and motives of offenders to those of victims. Focusing on victims, she argues, "may yet prove to be one of the most effective ways to curb increasing crime rates in South Africa' (Camerer, 1996:20). There are a number of reasons for adopting this approach: •

It has been shown, for example, that victimisation tends to be concentrated among certain segments of the population that are repeatedly victimised. In the United Kingdom in 1992, for example, it was found that half of those victimised were repeat victims and suffered 81% of all reported crimes.


Free download from

Victims of crime often become perpetrators of either retributive violence or of violence displaced within the social or domestic setting.

A focus on victims rather than offenders is more likely to lead to a proactive approach to crime prevention rather than the reactive approach associated with the criminal justice system.

Because of the under-reporting of crime, victimisation surveys may provide a more accurate source of information on crime than police statistics.

Criminal procedures and the courts are also more geared to dealing with offenders rather than victims of crime. As Camerer (1996:24) points out, victims tend to be marginalised within the court setting, as the emphasis is on apprehending and punishing the offender rather than consoling the victim. The focus of the justice system is on deterrence rather than restitution, with the court case conducted between the state and the offender, while the victim is reduced to a witness or part of the evidence (Camerer, 1996:20-25).

However, while there is much to recommend an increased focus on victims, simply shifting the focus from offenders to victims would reproduce a variation of the current problems associated with a narrow focus on offenders. Rather the solution lies in broadening the perspective on crime and violence in order to create a more holistic approach to crime and crime prevention. The public health approach, with its emphasis on risk factors, offers this broadened perspective. Evidence-led prevention design, implementation and evaluation The public health approach starts with defining the problem and identifying risk factors, then designing and evaluating interventions, and finally transforming interventions into programmes. Programme development is thus informed by a thorough descriptive and analytic knowledge base which ensures that interventions are closely targeted to local variations (down to the level of the neighbourhood or street) in the violence and injury profile. For instance, surveillance may reveal residents of a particular hostel or apartment block to be over-represented among homicide or rape victims, enabling situational and other preventive measures to be deployed at the site. Or, risk factor research may reveal a particular set of attitudinal and perceptual factors as inhibiting the development of self protective behaviour among a high-risk sub-group, thus indicating the target and content of an educational intervention. In addition to providing information for programme design, injury surveillance and serial epidemiological studies provide a basis for monitoring the outcome of interventions, evaluating their effectiveness, and modifying their content to conform to shifts in the violence and injury profile of the target area. For the public health approach, prevention programmes must be attentive to unique community perceptions and conditions, so as to secure the participation of individuals, households, and groups from diverse cultural and sub-cultural settings; engender a sense of ownership of the violence problem, and empower them in its solution. From the public health perspective, violence is therefore a problem for many different sectors and disciplines, demanding intersectoral approaches that link the prevention contributions that the police, the health sector, education, community groups and ordinary individuals can all make. Programmes, which are now beginning to return empirical evidence of violence prevention success, fall within three broad intervention categories.


1 Early developmental prevention Early developmental interventions target children aged three to five resident in disadvantaged urban communities at high risk of violence. They focus on the household and school, and involve a combination of enriched pre-school training, home visiting and parent effectiveness training. Farrington (1993) has identified successful examples of such interventions, and his review shows that some have achieved up to a 50% reduction in rates of violent offending and risky lifestyle patterns when intervention groups were compared to control groups at age 27. In addition, such programmes also appear to reduce the incidence of physical child abuse and non-intentional childhood injuries.

Free download from

2 Youth educational interventions These are usually schools-based, and recruit teachers as intervention agents to target youth at risk with anger management, conflict resolution and life skills training. Two successful examples are the Washington Community Violence Prevention Programme (Gainer, Webster & Champion, 1993), and the Lions-Quest International "Working Towards Peace" programme in Detroit (Laird, Syropoulos & Black,1996). In both cases, outcome among intervention students was measured against control groups, and showed significant decreases in violent behaviour, the tendency to legitimise violence, and the tendency to apply adversarial solutions to conflict situations. Both interventions also produced significant increases in pro-social attitudes and actions, as well as improved knowledge of violence risk factors. 3 Regulatory interventions Guns and other dangerous weapons do not actually cause violence, but can convert an argument with no associated injuries into one with severe injury or death. Regulatory interventions aim at enacting and ensuring the enforcement of laws that restrict the carrying of weapons in public, and at least in relation to guns have achieved considerable success. For instance, data from several US states before and after the introduction of mandatory sentencing on firearm offences "provides exceptionally strong support for the preventive effect model" with monthly reductions of up to 14% in the number of lives lost (Mcdowell, Loftin & Wiersema, 1992:386). Other interventions involving alcohol regulation, environmental modification, the provision of safe houses for child and female victims of violence, the development of alternatives to gang membership, and violence post-vention facilities have also been implemented by programmes around the world. That they have yet to yield hard evidence of outcome success may be due less to their lack of efficacy than to an evaluation failure partially grounded in the absence of adequate injury surveillance systems serving the target populations. To sum up, public health views violence and injury as a problem to be prevented through the systematic application of scientific principles to problem identification, risk factor analysis, programme design and programme evaluation. Central to this vision is its focus upon the attitudinal and behavioural tendencies of individuals and groups as an outcome of causal relationships to people (e.g. parents, peers), to products (e.g. guns, alcohol, and media violence), and to environments (both physical and socio-cultural), Through appropriate descriptive and analytical research,


it is possible to quantify these lines of risk and - by disabling them through educational, engineering and enforcement strategies - to reduce the amount, intensity and severity of violence and violence-related trauma in the target population. Popular engagement and empowerment

Free download from

Another prominent feature of the public health approach (and in particular of that strand of public health practice known as health promotion) is its emphasis on popular participation and involvement. This emphasis can be directly related to the principles of primary health care and health promotion. In terms of the Qttawa Charter, for example, health promotion is defined as "the process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve, their health". Popular participation is not only seen as socially "healthy", but also as a prerequisite for advances in public health. Empowering people with knowledge and methods is regarded as the main strategy for increasing people's control over their own health (Anderson & Svanström, 1998:4). Although not all public health interventions can accommodate popular participation and empowerment to the same degree, the emphasis on the engagement of civil society serves the additional purpose of encouraging responsiveness to community needs and of designing interventions that are socially and culturally appropriate to their targeted populations. For example, Andersson and Svanström (1998:5) identify the following values as a foundation for the WHO Safe Community Programmes: •

Individuals have the right to be safe, to live in the community and remain unhurt given the state of development.

Individuals have the right to be involved in making decisions that deal with the safety of their environment.

The community has the right to decide what are to be the priorities for action and what resources will be allocated to interventions.

Individuals have the right to know what is hazardous and what are risk factors for injury. As a corollary governments and manufacturers have the duty to inform the community of such hazards and risk factors.

The community has the right to receive skills. The community is a worthy recipient of knowledge about injury control.

The public health emphasis on popular engagement and empowerment provides a natural link to the current debate on social capital that has focused attention on the importance of social resources for human well-being. In particular, a growing body of research has recently demonstrated a strong relationship between social capital/social cohesion and public health. For example, a seven-year epidemiological study of the population of a county in California showed that people with few social ties were two to three times more likely to die of all causes than were those with


more extensive contacts (Kawachi et al., 1999). Among the causes of death shown to be related to social capital is violent crime. In fact, recent public health research has found a consistent relationship between social capital, income inequality and violence (Kawachi et al.,1997; Kennedy et al.,1998; Wilkinson, 1999a&b).

Free download from

Although various definitions exist, social capital has been defined as those "features of social organisation, such as trust, norms, and networks, that can improve the efficiency of society by facilitating co-ordinated actions" (Putnam,1993:167). Social capital may therefore be seen as the "glue" that holds a society together, or alternatively, as a "lubricant" that facilitates or eases social interactions that people may work together towards common goals. Whichever metaphor one prefers, the central issue is that social capital is productive in that it facilitates co-operation and makes possible the attainment of goals that could not otherwise be achieved, or at least not at the same cost. For example, two farmers who exchange tools can get more done with smaller expenditures on capital equipment. Similar considerations apply to credit associations, the regulation of irrigation, the sharing of information on jobs, most business transactions, as well as the control over crime in communities. In each case, existing stocks of trust, social norms and networks help to facilitate co-operative behaviour as opposed to selfseeking and opportunistic behaviour. While Putnam and others have argued that there is a strong association between social capital and development, this does not necessarily mean that social capital will lead directly to development, just as wealth and technology do not necessarily lead to human betterment. However, as Evans (1996a:1034) puts it, "if people can't trust each other or work together, then improving the material conditions of life is an uphill battle". The role that trust plays in facilitating co-operative behaviour may be illustrated by the following example: A major obstacle faced by community-based crime prevention programmes in poor and high crime areas is the lack of trust in many such communities (Hope, 1995). In communities in which neighbours trust one another, it is possible for them to co-operate in crime prevention precisely because they trust one another. One is able to ask a neighbour to keep an eye on one's house while one is on holiday, because one trusts the neighbour not to take advantage of the knowledge of one's absence to burgle one's house. Where such trust does not exist between neighbours, it is not in one's interest to inform one's neighbours of one's movements. Social capital is therefore seen as contributing to development in a manner similar "to more orthodox assets, such as human capital (education, health, and training), physical capital (tools and technology), and financial capital (savings, credit and investment)" (Woolcock, 1999:2). Essentially, three kinds (or capital more accurately, levels) of concepts are associated with social capital: (i)

The simplest of these is associated with Putnam who saw social capital as a set of "horizontal associations" that facilitate co-ordinated and co-operative relationships between people.


Free download from


A second, but broader, concept is associated with the work of James Coleman (1988). Coleman defines social capital as "a variety of different entities, with two elements in common: they all consist of some aspect of social structure, and they facilitate certain actions of actors - whether personal or corporate actors - within the structure" (p. 598), This definition places greater emphasis on social structure and broadens the concept to include vertical as well as horizontal associations. vertical or hierarchical relationships are characterised by unequal distributions of power among interacting agents.


The third and broadest concept of social capital includes the social and political context that enables norms to develop and shapes social structure. In addition to horizontal and hierarchical relationships, this perspective also includes formal institutional relationships and structures, such as government, the rule of law, the judicial system, and civil and political liberties (Grootaert, 1998:23). However, this conception of social capital may be so broad as to render the concept meaningless. It may therefore be more meaningful to conceive of the broad social and political environment as an enabling environment for social capital, rather than as social capital itself.

These three perspectives should not be seen as mutually exclusive alternatives, but rather as different levels of the manifestation and analysis of social capital which interact with one another. Social capital is also relevant at the macro level and in particular in relation to the state. For example, Evans (1996a&b) and others (e.g. Fox,1996a&b) have attempted to address the role of the state in development by marrying social capital theory with revisionist theories of the "East Asian Miracle" which have also assigned a key role to the state in development. Based on a range of studies from various parts of the world, Evans (1996a:1035) concludes that while it is not a "magic bullet", "statesociety synergy lies at the heart of developmental success". In exploring the potential for co-operation across the public-private divide, Evans (1996b) distinguishes between (a) synergy based on complementarity involving mutually supportive relations between government and citizens, and (b) synergy based on social ties between government and civil society (embeddedness). Social capital is of special relevance to South Africa because of the role that racial oppression and inequality have played in the disintegration of key institutions such as families and communities, and the creation of distrust between social groups. In particular, the relationship that researchers have established between social capital, inequality and violent crime has considerable relevance for South Africa. With a Gini coefficient of about 0,59, South Africa has one of the highest rates of inequality in the world. While the poorest 20% of the population accounts for less than 3% of the country's expenditure, the wealthiest 20% account for nearly 65% of expenditure (World Bank, 1999). As such, it may not be merely coincidental that we also have an extremely high crime rate. The concept ,of social capital therefore offers a potential means not only for gaining a better understanding of crime in South Africa, but also for developing more effective methods for combating crime. As with any important or new issue in the social sciences, the idea of social capital is hotly contested and has both its champions and its detractors. While there are many important scholars (including prominent members of the World Bank and the Harvard School of Public Health) that regard social capital as a major breakthrough, there are also many others who are critical of the concept on both theoretical and empirical grounds. 26

Free download from

Many of the objections and critiques of social capital revolve around what it is and how it is defined. These include whether social capital is really a form of capital. It is also argued that social capital tries to explain too much with too little; that a single term is inadequate to explain the range of empirical situations demanded of it. For example, there is some confusion about whether social capital should be regarded as the infrastructure or the content of social relations, or both. It is difficult to separate what social capital is from what it does, or to distinguish between its sources and benefits. There is also a tendency to confuse the sources of social capital with its consequences. Perhaps because of these conceptual confusions social capital has sometimes been used to justify contradictory public policy measures. Empirically a broad range of factors seem to contribute to social capital, but a compelling framework for theorising the relations between these factors may still be lacking (see, for example, Woolcock, 1997; Edwards, 1999; Adler, 1999). Others have argued that the attempt to explain political and economic performance within a single framework fails to recognise that economic development may not always be congruent with democratic politics (Putzel, 1997). It has also been argued that what is called social capital may just be a by-product of more complex social structures and interactions that are shaped by history, and that while social capital tends to suggest co-operation among equals, it does not adequately address the problematic of inequality (Edwards, 1999). While most of these issues have still to be resolved, the social capital debate has generated new perspectives on many of our oldest social problems and suggested innovative solutions in dealing with them. The problems and difficulties associated with social capital may call for caution and constraint, but the potentials and promise of this new approach suggest that it would be foolish to ignore it, or to wait too long for clearer answers to the questions it poses to emerge. 1

The three factors of host, agent and environment form the foundations of the most basic model of the public health approach and although many additional issues have been added, the three factors are still present within the more complex models that have evolved. In Chapter 10, the development of public health models is addressed in some detail, demonstrating the increasing complexity of issues that are addressed by the public health approach.

References AD HOC COMMITTEE ON HEALTH RESEARCH RELATING TO FUTURE INTERVENTION OPTIONS. 1996. Investing in Health Research and Development. World Health Organisation, Geneva (Document TDR/Gen/96.1). ADLER, P.S.1999. Social capital; the good, the bad and the ugly. Available online at: http// ANDERSSON, R. & SVANSTRÖM, L.1998. Safety vs. health promotion: What can we learn from each other? Unpublished paper presented at the Seminar on Safety Promotion, Quebec, February. Camerer, L. 1996. A victim-centric approach to crime prevention. African Security Review, 5(4):20-27. COLEMAN, J.S.1988. Social capital in the creation of human capital. American Journal of Sociology, 94:S95-SI20. COLLIER, P. & Hoeffler, A.1998. On economic causes of civil war. Oxford Economic Papers, 50:563-573. 27

EASTERLY, W. 1999. Life during growth. Journal of Economic Growth, 4(3):239-275. EDWARDS, M. 1999, Enthusiasts, tacticians and sceptics: the World Bank, civil society and social capital, Available online at; EVANS, P. 1996a. Introduction: Development strategies across the public-private divide. World Development, 24(b):1033-1037. EVANS, P. 1996b. Government action, social capital and development: Reviewing the evidence on synergy. World Development, 24(6):1119-1132. FARRINGTON, D.P.1993. Success stories in the prevention of adolescent aggression and youth violence. Plenary presentation to the Second World Injury Prevention and Control Conference. Atlanta G.A.: March.

Free download from

FOX, J. 1996a. Local governance and citizen participation: Social capital formation and enabling policy environments. Paper presented at the Second International Ford Foundation Workshop on Local Governance, Manila. FOX, J.1996b. How does civil society thicken? The political construction of social capital in rural Mexico. World Development, 24(6):1089-1103. GAINER, P.S., WEBSTER, D.W. & CHAMPION, H.R., 1993. A youth violence prevention program. Arch Surgery, 128:303-308. GARTNER, R. 1990. The victims of homicide: a temporal and cross-national comparison. American Sociological Review, 55:92-106. GREENWOOD, P.W., MODEL, K.E,, RYDELL, C.P. & CHIESA, J,1996. Diverting children from a life of crime: measuring costs and benefits. Santa Monica CA: RAND. GROOTAERT, O,1998. Social capital, The missing link? SCI Working Paper, no. 3, April, Washington: World Bank. HOPE, T. 1995. Community crime prevention. In: Tonry, M. & Farrington, D.P, (eds), Building a safer society. Crime and Justice, Vol.19. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.


KAWACHI, I., KENNEDY, B.P., LOCHNER, K. & PROTHROW-STITH, D. 1997. Social capital, income inequality, and mortality. American Journal of Public Health, 87:1491-1498. KAWACHI, I., KENNEDY, B.P. & LOCHNER, K.1999. Long live community: social capital as public health. World Bank Social Capital Library. Available online at: http://,..af80485266840000b336?OpenDocument. KENNEDY, B.P., KAWACHI, I, PROTHROW-STITH, D., LOCHNER, K. & GUPTA, V. 1998. Social capital, income inequality, and firearm violent crime. Social Science and Medicine, 47(1):7-17.

Free download from

KRUGER,J., Butchart, A., SEEDAT, M. & GILCHRIST, A. 1998. A public health approach to violence prevention in South Africa. In R. van Eeden and M. Wentzel (eds.) The dynamics of aggression and violence in South Africa, 399424. Pretoria, Human Sciences Research Council. LAIRD M., Syropoulos, M. & BLACK, S.,1996. Aggression and violence: The challenge for Detroit Schools. Lions-Quest International. LAST, J.,1988. A dictionary of epidemiology (2nd ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. ATZOPOULOS, R. 2000. Rapid assessment of trauma facilities at state hospitals in South Africa. Violence and injury surveillance consortium, unpublished technical report, May. MAX, W. & PRICE, D.P. 1993. Shooting in the dark: estimating the cost of personal injuries. Health Affairs, 12(4);171-185, MCDOWELL, D., Loftin, C. & WIERSMA, B., 1992. A comparative study of the preventive effects of mandatory sentencing laws for gun crimes. The Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, 83:378-394. NARAYAN, D. 1999. Bonds and bridges: Social capital and poverty. Washington, D.C.: World Bank. NCPS, 1996. National crime prevention strategy, May 1996. PEDEN, M. & BUTCHART, A. (1999). Trauma and injury. In: Ntuli, A. and Crisp, N. (eds.) South African Health Review, 1999:331-344. Durban: Health Systems Trust. PUTNAM, R.D. 1993. Making democracy work: Civic traditions in modern Italy. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. PUTZEL, J.1997. Accounting for the "dark side" of social capital: reading Robert Putnam on democracy. Journal of International Development, 9(7):939-949. ROTH, J.A. & MOORS, M.H., 1995. Reducing violent crimes and intentional injuries. NIJ Research in Action. Available online at SHERMAN, L.W. 1996c. Communities and crime prevention. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at


SHERMAN, L.W. 1996d. Policing for crime prevention. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY S. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at US DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE. 1998. Female victims of violent crime. Bureau of Justice Statistics. Available online at:

Free download from

WHO Task Force on Violence and Health,1996. Making violence a public health priority: A program for the World Health Organisation (WHO) (Draft - 9.18.96). Geneva: WHO. WILKINSON, R.G. 1999a. Health, hierarchy and social anxiety. In: ADLER, N.E., MARMOT, M., McEWEN, B.S. & STEWART, J. (eds.), Socioeconomic status and health in industrial nations: social psychological and biological pathways. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 896:48-63. Also available online at: WILKINSON, R.G. 1999b. Income inequality, social cohesion and health: clarifying the theory. International Journal of health services, 29(3):525-543. WOOLCOCK, M. 1997. Social capital and economic development: towards a theoretical synthesis and policy framewoork. Theory and Society, 27:1151-208. WOOLCOCK, M.1999. Managing risks, shocks, and opportunities in developing economies: the role of social capital. Available online at: WORLD BANK. 1999. Distribution of income or consumption, World Development Indicators 2000. Available online at: tab2_8.pdf.


Chapter 2 Violence and violence prevention in South Africa: A sociological and historical perspective*

Free download from

Alex Butchart, Martin Terre Blanche, Brandon Humber and Mohamed Seedat Violence, like any other threat to individual integrity and social order, is an emotive phenomenon easily pulled into the service of ideological and political interests. Individual instances of violence occurring for the most part beyond the public eye, it is difficult to accurately "see" the problem, and the epidemiological vacuum of violence in South Africa is filled with social fantasies that serve as surrogate realities to which the public, the police and politicians alike respond. This can be illustrated in the first instance by the middle-class callers to a May 1998 talk radio programme who seriously debated expert evidence that there was more crime and violence in impoverished "township" settings than in moneyed suburbia. Second, although violence is pre-eminently a masculine phenomenon involving male perpetrators and male victims, it is violence against women that takes centre stage and receives the greatest public and political coverage. Third, and although there is little evidence for their preventive value, "victim empowerment" programmes targeted at the psychosocial counselling of individuals after they have been hijacked, raped or assaulted are seen as the royal road to prevention and prioritised over interventions aimed at stopping attacks from happening at all. Fourth, is the belief, repeatedly challenged by the local and international evidence led in this report, that violence is a purely criminal problem most effectively understood through the lens of police statistics and most effectively controlled through criminal justice measures aimed at deterrence, incapacitation and revenge. Together, these and other myths about crime and violence in South Africa sustain a growing security industry in which the concept of prevention is reduced to the idea of protection (higher walls, increased firepower, escalating insurance and security fees). Instead of socio-environmental interventions to reduce the number of violent attacks, fortunes are built around a vicious circle where target hardening stimulates an escalation in the intensity of violence, which necessitates further target hardening and, most importantly, further increases the gulf between the rich and the poor. Already, the late twentieth-century version of the medieval walled city is a reality of our urban landscape, Household insurance coverage is made conditional on properties being subject to 24-hour "armed response" monitoring, and "arming-up" in respect of private weapons bought from shady township and inner-city dealers in the name of personal protection outstrips calls to make the country gun free. Against the high visibility accorded middle-class victims and potential victims of violence, impoverished populations manifesting the highest incidence of assault, homicide and sexual violence are almost invisible, their lives relegated to the growing low-income and informal townships that surround all our major cities. This socially implosive state of affairs is in part sustained by the sociologically uninformed assumptions that fuel the violence control industry, and which it is the aim of this chapter critically to reflect upon. First, the social role of violence and analyses of violence will be explicated in terms of Michel Foucault's (1977) wellknown distinction between sovereign and disciplinary power. Second, these concepts will be applied to a historical review of violence and violence prevention in twentiethcentury South Africa. Third, the findings of this socio-historical review will be used to argue that, unless South Africa is to revert to a situation of militarised governance 31

based on violently enforced social partitioning, the public health approach to violence prevention is the only one consistent with social democracy and a power system that fosters positive social control in the individual, the family, and the community.

Free download from

Violence in twentieth-century South Africa: A Foucauldean perspective According to Foucault, a productive relationship exists between power and knowledge at any particular time, with the result that an apparently objective phenomenon such as violence is in fact fabricated in historically contingent ways as an outcome of this relationship. In Discipline and Punish Foucault (I977) explicitly examined the role of violence in relation to power. He argued that over the past 300 years a shift has occurred in the power-knowledge relationship in the West from sovereign power, where social control emanates from a central nexus of authority, to disciplinary power, whereby social control is dispersed throughout society and down to the finest grain of individual and sub-individual determinants of behaviour. Under sovereign power, knowledge of the state and respect for its might are inculcated through highly visible displays of the state's capacity to command obedience, the most prominent of these being actual and symbolic shows of force and the capacity to inflict violence on the citizenry (e.g. public executions, military parades, chain gangs, news footage of police or army action). Disciplinary power, by contrast, works by directing attention onto the individual subjects of the state, and through such individualising and subjectifying technologies as the survey, clinical medicine, the psychological interview, the public opinion poll, and training in the ways of physical and mental health, operates to recruit them into becoming their own overseers, exercising power over, and against themselves. Sovereignty produces both the "memorable man" as the custodian of power and the oppressed masses who sporadically try to wrest it from him; discipline produces the "calculable man”, this being the modern individual who believes in individual autonomy and who directs his or her agency to caring for and enhancing that agency in ways that conform to the greater good of society. Although sovereign power in all but its symbolic form has disappeared from most Western countries, the dynamics of South African society and politics in the twentieth century can be interpreted in terms of both sovereign and disciplinary power, local policies and practices in relation to violence having been conditioned by both these modalities of power. Violence first became a target for socio-medical investigation in the late 1890s, and from then until around 1960 was understood in predominantly psycho-dynamic and ethno-psychiatric terms. In South Africa (Butchart, 1998), as elsewhere in Africa (McCulloch, 1995; Vaughan, 1991), the "African mind" was thus envisaged as a calculable object of intervention, the government at once pathologising violence and sustaining attempts to prevent it through the manipulation of traditional tribal structures and values. In the 196Os, this ethnopsychiatric vision of violence began to fade within a new era of sovereign power where violence (both as symbol and act) was wielded as a legitimate tactic of political struggle by the apartheid state and its opponents. From being a sign of psychopathology, violence became a signal of political might, the "moral orthopaedic" practices of socio-medical analysis and intervention being overshadowed by the sciences of war and revolution to install a reign of terror. A third important shift in how violence was understood and responded to commenced in the late 1980s. With the collapse of apartheid and moves towards democracy, the use of violence for sovereign ends was deligitimised. Now the concern was not the spectacle of violence as a means to political power, but rather the consequences of violence - for the individual, the family, the community and society. Propelled to a heightened visibility by the vigilant attention of the socio-medical sciences and the guardians of human rights, the victim of violence now became the dominant focus 32

within a new disciplinary regime preoccupied with documenting and healing the physical, psychological and social wounds inflicted by the political violence of the past. While in 1996 the response to violence continued to be mainly reactive and dominated by the cult of the victim, it has been possible over the last five years to discern the beginnings of a new and distinct disciplinary recognition of violence. This is the public health approach informing this report, which, as repeatedly stressed, is fundamentally concerned with prevention rather than protection, control or punishment. Accordingly, it constructs violence as the product of a complex of socioecological relationships and risk factors that impinge upon people to increase or decrease their proclivity for violence, and which, following adequate identification by way of epidemiological and social research, can be manipulated to prevent the problem.

Free download from

Basic instincts and moral orthopaedics: Violence as a psychodynamic phenomenon The late nineteenth-century rise of industrialisation in South Africa brought together large numbers of Africans and Europeans in the confined urban spaces of the mine, the factory, the shop and the home, and it was in response to these problems of proximity that the problem of violence first became an object of concern for the human sciences in South Africa. From the 1600s violence, had, of course, been systematically applied both as a tactic of colonial expansion and as a weapon of African resistance, as exemplified in accounts of life on "the frontier", that boundary zone between European "civilisation" and African "barbarism" in which battles were fought and the spectacle of the gallows played out (see De Kock, 1950; MacCrone, 1957). By the 1890s, however, the new social configuration imposed by industrialisation demanded a radical transformation in the discourse of violence. For the old ways in which it had been used as a weapon of sovereign command through terror were no longer practicable, their efficiency undermined by a great swelling in the size and density of the population living in towns and cities. This transformation required a more efficient method of controlling people, in the form of a power that worked less upon the body, than into and through it by analysing the body's inner dynamics and transforming its previously irrelevant urges and desires into malleable objects of a management strategy directed toward the manufacture of "docile" bodies. In broad terms, this marked the dawn of modernity and a shift in South Africa to what Foucault termed "disciplinary power”. Now, violence for the first time entered the domain of the human sciences, this point of transition from the memorable man to the calculable man somewhat dramatically marked by a new fear in the hearts of Europeans as to the dangerous "instincts" and "passions" that lurked in the dark of the newly invented African mind. In 1893 a Johannesburg morning newspaper could thus carry the following somewhat dire warning to its readers: “Beware of your houseboy, for under the innocent front may be lurking and lying latent the passions of a panther, or worse!" (cited in Van Onselen, 1982:49). This response to the attempted rape by a black male servant of his white "madam" catalysed the first of a series of "black peril" scares that traversed the Witwatersrand between then and 1912, and in the shape of the "swart gevaar" and the "rooi gevaar" would resurface at times of tension well into the 1980s. As Van Onselen (1982:50-53) has shown, the majority of actual incidents of violence around which the 1893 episode crystallised had clustered among economically less stable working and middle-class households, suggesting that as a collective phenomenon the "curse of the black peril" was driven by "periods of stress and acute tension within the political economy ... as a whole" (p. 51).


Free download from

With the Lunacy Amendment Act of 1908, the "basic instincts" underlying the curse of the black peril found their first formal inscription in a policy document that distinguished between "Governor’s pleasure", "criminal" and "ordinary lunatics" (Transvaal Archives Depot (TAD), CS 863/14966), to delineate all those who fell into the intersection between madness and badness as "dangerous individuals", a category of deviance that in this colonial context was to express itself with particular clarity in relation to violence and the African. Thus, by 1910 the impulsive African as a dangerous individual found further formalisation in the Secretary for Native Affairs' suggestion that asylum superintendents endorse the passes of all native lunatics as to the fact of and duration of their detention in the asylum, and ensure that they were repatriated to their own kraals, not only to purify the white community of their threat, but also "so that the patients may have a complete rest ... to strengthen their recovery" (TAD, 202/10 LD 1786). Two years later, this rapidly consolidating psycho-dynamic discourse on violence found further confirmation in a 1912 editorial in the South African Medical Record which called for `"the curse of the black peril" to be dealt with through "a scientific treatment of this social evil on exactly the same lines as if it were a human disease" (Editorial, South Africa Medical Record). Locating the cause of "the black peril" to the removal of Africans from their tribal environment, it observed how: We have taken enormous hordes of young adult savages or semi-savages, eminently virile in more senses than one, from their own environment, and have placed them in an environment absolutely teeming with every possible stimulus to the sexual impulse at the same time that they are, necessarily, kept celibates ... We have not even tried to put them m the social mosquito-proof house of a reproduction of a native community, but, on the contrary, have freely exposed them to all the stings of a class of human mosquitoes whose interest is to inoculate them with every kind of human vice, and, as regards some forty thousand of them at least, have permitted their employment in duties of all other most calculated to raise the sexual impulse (Editorial, South African Medical Record). Consolidated in the 1920s by the burgeoning of academic disciplines (e.g. anthropology, ethnology, psychology, sociology) concerned with human and in particular African thought and behaviour (see Dubow,1987; Foster, 1991), and by the infamous analyses of the Carnegie Commission into the poor white problem (see Albertyn, 1932), the discourse of violence as a psycho-dynamic problem had by the 1930s embraced the African in a web of infra-policies aimed at preventing violence both among Africans and by Africans towards Europeans. Confirming that violence was somehow related to madness, and madness in turn to urbanisation, Sachs' Black Hamlet (1937) and Laubscher's Sex, Custom and Psychopathology (1937) demonstrated the problem of violence to be especially prevalent in the towns and cities. Hence a system of moral orthopaedics focused on remedying the urban African's lack of super-ego control by recreating carefully selected aspects of tribal culture in the urban native location. As Laubscher noted "the commission of sadistic sexual acts on European women by detribalised natives living in towns led me to enquire into the frequency of the occurrences of sexual offences in the native territories" (Laubscher, 1937:257). Finding such offences rare among rural Africans, Laubscher concluded that their prevention in urban settings could be achieved through manipulation of the tribal rites relating to African masculinity. Thus, because neglect of the circumcision rite created "a marked instability ... in behaviour and attitude to practical things", Laubscher felt that it should not only be permitted but actively encouraged among urban Africans (p. 134). In contrast to this stabilising and therefore desirable rite was 34

Free download from

the "racial characteristic of sharing and mutual assistance" (Laubscher, 1937:135), In the rural areas this was an admirable attribute. In the towns, however, it "facilitates his comprehension of communistic ideals ... and makes the native prone to the influence of agitators" (pp.196-197). Such altruism was therefore to be met with the antidote of education, carefully calculated to engender a desire for private property within the framework of those racial and tribal traditions consistent with "capitalistic administration" (Laubscher, 1937:197). Elaboration of this psycho-dynamic approach to violence would continue well into the 1970s when, building on the psychometric tradition of moral and personality surveillance established by Biesheuvel (1953;1955;1957), Sherwood (1957) and De Ridder (1961), the last psychometric device explicitly designed to monitor the individual's tendencies to violence was published by the Human Sciences Research Council as the "Zulu TAT" (Erasmus, 1975). However, the disciplinary thrust to monitor violence through such psychological surveillance and the screening out of dangerous individuals (Editorial, South African Medical Journal) was by the 1960s subordinate to a new sovereignty in which the use of violence by the state and by its opponents eclipsed the contribution of the psychological sciences to its control, all but obliterating the visibility of ordinary individuals as victims and perpetrators of violence.

The new sovereignty: State violence and the armed struggle Foucault's famous description of the 1757 execution of Damiens the regicide (1977:3) was a reminder that the mark of a society in the grip of sovereign power is the strategic deployment - both by the state and by its opponents - of violence as a mechanism by which the formal centres of control and resistance display themselves to the public eye, asserting and confirming their might through their capacity to create spectacles of death and destruction. The first great rupture in twentiethcentury South Africa's discourse on violence occurred in 1960. For it was then that intensification of the armed struggle as a strategy of African resistance against the oppressive policies of apartheid called forth an escalation in the state's use of visible violence, to set in place a new regime of sovereign power that would last out the next 30 years. Within the previous regime, violence had extended the eye of disciplinary surveillance into the depths of the mind and pervaded the spaces between bodies to mark out the interstices of tribe, culture, tradition, and interracial contact, which were then targeted by "native policy". Now, the new sovereignty meant that violence operated to curtail this individuating and illuminating tendency, installing in its place a great binary division between "the blacks" and "the whites". As a 1961 Pan Africanist Congress pamphlet put it: "We are starting again Africans ... we die once. Africa will be free on 1 January. The white people shall suffer, the black people will rule. Freedom comes after bloodshed. Poqo has started. (cited in Reader's Digest, 1988:411) This, then, marked the beginning of a time of bombs, guns, bulldozers and brutal tortures, a time when violence was only nominally a crime in violation of the law. Any criminal justice pretensions to the contrary were constantly contradicted by daily displays of state violence beating down on African bodies, while those very bodies fought back with the self-same weapons of sovereign power (see Karis & Carter, 1977, for an historical analysis of this swing to violence). The apartheid state thus operated in the first instance through overt political violence - conventional and counter-insurgency warfare, forced removals, assassinations, "disappearances",


detention and torture - as well as through myriad forms of "structural" violence. In response, the "armed struggle" began around the same time as the 1960 massacres at Sharpeville and Langa, and throughout the next two decades acts of violence increased exponentially, culminating in the dark years of the 1980s.

Free download from

Under the weight of this oppression, the gaze of psychosocial surveillance that previously had pathologised the African mind as an object of white consciousness was reversed. In the 1970s, and as the single most prominent disiplinary counterpoint to the destructive power of sovereign violence, Biko's Fanon-inspired Black Consciousness (BC) emerged to invent an African personality that was a mirror image of that produced by ethno-psychiatry. Essentially an inward-looking process, the effect of BC was to expand the meaning of. violence to include sociological and ideological factors, which it identified as destroying the authenticity of black people and undermining the African's pride and dignity. Hence the appeal of BC for the black man (sic) to ... come to himself; to pump back life into his empty shell; to infuse him with pride and dignity; to remind him of his complicity in the crime of allowing himself to be misused and therefore letting evil reign supreme in the country of his birth. (Biko, 1988/1970:43) While acknowledging that not all oppressed persons were equally subject to the alienating effects of apartheid, the BC focus on how it insinuated itself into subjectivity meant that black persons themselves constituted the pathology, and therefore that their cure demanded rehabilitation of the entire individual and social body. This was emphasised by Manganyi's characterisation of the ordinary African as a "psychological paraplegic": ... in the African experience there was over time developed a sociological schema of the black body prescribed by white standards. The prescribed attributes of this sociological schema have, as we should know by now, been entirely negative. It should be considered natural under these circumstances for an individual black person to conceive of his body image as something entirely undesirable, something which paradoxically must be kept at a distance outside of one's self so to speak. (Manganyi, 1973:51) By problematising the sociological and ideological conduits through which apartheid oppression internalised itself in the minds and bodies of the oppressed, the effect of BC was to expand the variety of sites that were regarded as valid targets for violent resistance, resulting in the spread of violence beyond military installations and personnel to civilians and other non-military groups as the actual and perceived representatives of the apartheid state. Prominent among these non-military targets was the state system of "Bantu education". A pamphlet circulated to Soweto parents during the June 1976 protests against Afrikaans as a medium of education stated: "... you should rejoice for having given birth to this type of child ... a child who prefers to die from a bullet rather than swallow a poisonous education which relegates him and his parents to a position of perpetual insubordination (cited in Reader's Digest, 1988:444). In 1977, a year after the Soweto protests, Steven Biko, the driving force of Black Consciousness, was himself murdered in an instance of political brutality that sensationally focused world attention upon the political use of violence by the South African state. The frequency of politically motivated attacks against the apartheid state and those seen as its members continued to increase after 1977, and these attacks were mostly regarded as legitimate by the majority of South Africans who saw no alternative, Posel writing that "from the early 1980s, mass resistance against apartheid erupted 36

Free download from

with unprecedented tenacity and ferocity" (1990:154). By the mid-1980s it was as if the long-established pattern of violence and counter-violence was spiralling out of control. Guerrilla attacks increased by 304 percent between 1984 and 1985 (Weekly Mail,17-24 January 1986 cited in Vogelman,1995), and in 1986 and 1987 there were 230 and 240 guerrilla attacks respectively (Weekly Mail, 8-14 July 1988 cited in Vogelman, 1995). As these attacks grew in frequency and state repression increased, so the idea of the armed struggle was increasingly popularised. The social acceptability of violence as a form of resistance was further boosted by the African National Congress' (ANC) call to make townships ungovernable through any means possible (Vogelman, 1995) and by the declaration of 1986 as the year of the "people's army" (South African Institute of Race Relations, 1986). Similarly, and as it had for many years, the state continued to claim a legitimate right to use violent repression. Television viewers, for instance, were repeatedly told in 1986 that "we have a total revolutionary onslaught against us ... we experience it every day" (cited in Posel, 1990:167). Such depictions of the state's integrity under siege were a way of legitimating its use of violence, for they allowed academics such as Van der Merwe (cited in Hoffman & McKendrick, 1990:17) to argue that all nations validate and enforce violence in "the pursuit or protection of national interests", and National Party politicians to pontificate about the "total onslaught" and the threat of communism. These political and ideological positions found their tactical expression in the establishment of a "National Security Management System", which from the State Security Council downwards gave the military direct influence, through some 500 secret committees, over decision making down to the level of local government (Cock, 1989; 1994). This systematic "security" approach and the "low-intensity conflict" or counter-insurgency operations of the state exerted their pressure over the entire society, including the media and educational institutions, and soon polarised all into pro- and anti-apartheid camps. By 1990, however, it was evident that the apartheid regime was collapsing under the combined force of internal destabilisation and external pressure (e.g. trade embargoes and other socio-economic sanctions). As democratic reform appeared imminent, attempts to delegitimate the use of violence for political ends escalated. Thus, and amidst ongoing township violence at the inter-community level, the ANC denounced the armed struggle, while the state (despite continuing to sponsor numerous "third force" actions) started moving towards the negotiated settlement that culminated in the historic April 1994 elections when sovereign power was formally passed from white to black hands. In post-apartheid South Africa the "legitimate" aspect of violence lingers in the form of sporadic flare-ups between ANC and Inkatha Freedom Party supporters in KwaZulu-Natal, which have resulted in 9 300 deaths and 61 reported massacres between 1990 and 1993 (Bronkhorst, 1995).

The New Discipline I: Caring for victims of violence The re-emergence of sovereign power in South Africa during the apartheid years (as evidenced in spectacular displays of direct force by both oppressor and oppressed) constituted a hiatus in the extension of the more "synaptic" forms of disciplinary power characteristic of the modern industrial nation. It was thus not only statesanctioned racial discrimination, but also the crude methods of its enforcement that constituted a scandal to more progressive political sensibilities locally and internationally, and rather than respond solely with direct counter-force, many attempted to draw South African political practices back into a modernist, disciplinary configuration. Among such groups were the socio-medical sciences, which owe their very existence to the modernist power regime that has as its object and effect the individual. Consequently, mental health professionals attempted to counter the state’s preoccupation with strategies of sovereign domination, and replace these with 37

a progressive-humanist alternative that emphasised the individual, liberation, and empowerment, thrusting to prominence not the sources of violence but rather its victims. Conditioned by this new regime of disciplinary power, the individual as the victim of violence emerged in two distinct but related forms. On the one hand, as a victim of ideological and structural violence who, viewed through the application by local scholars of Bulhan's (1985) interpretation of Fanon (1967), recalled the African personality that had been fabricated by BC nearly 20 years earlier. For instance, in attempting to explain the highly elevated rates of homicide and assault observed among blacks in comparison to whites, Nell and Brown wrote:

Free download from

Apartheid is a successor to colonialism, preserving the colonial structures of power and privilege. If Bulhan's hypothesis that "vertical" institutional violence in colonial and neo-colonial societies spreads horizontally among the victims of oppression is correct, it offers an explanation for the high homicide and assault rates among Africans (Nell & Brown, 1991, p. 295). In comparison, the victim of violence as harmed by a traumatic event was by far the more prominent object of concern within this regime and the outcome of a somewhat different set of practices. These practices constituted the work done by (mainly white) psychiatrists, psychologists and medical practitioners, who in treating the victims of torture, detention and injury resulting from police action (see Perkel, 1990; Rayner, 1990; Solomons, 1988; Spitz, Eastwood & Verryn,1990), risked decontextualising the origins and outcomes of violence by reducing it to a discrete event with discrete consequences for the individual. Accordingly, this form of victimology was characterised by its own, self-reflexive critique, which tried to show that violence was an ongoing phenomenon (Straker, 1987); that detention "does not only produce negative psychological effects but is also a site and a source ... of active human transformation towards a more just social order" (Foster & Skinner,1990:229), and that the uncritical definition of persons as victims could be counter-productive (Swartz & Levett, 1989; Levett, 1989). While certainly having somewhat different emphases, both these strands within the new discipline of the victim aimed to simultaneously illuminate the excesses and intensity of state violence, and to repair the damage this caused. Despite the extent of these confessional activities from the 1980s onwards, it was only in the mid 1990s - when the wider political arena started to shift back towards a disciplinary configuration -that their import began to filter upwards from the infra-policy level and into formal policy documents. Early indications that this victim-oriented discourse was becoming formalised appeared in several draft documents produced by national and regional ANC health forums in the early 1990s. Within these documents mental health was continually tied to the socio-political context and violence began to be outlined as a mental health problem, requiring that those affected by it be treated through systematic intervention programmes. However, these of forts to redraw violence as a disciplinary problem for the health and social sciences met with little immediate success. The initial ANC Policy Guidelines (1992) for health omitted any mention of violence as a mental health concern. By 1994, however, violence was articulated as a key issue requiring urgent mental health attention. This was clearly documented in the ANC Health Plan (1994), the Reconstruction and Development Programme (1994), and subsequent policy documents including the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Committee Report (1995), and the Strategic Management Team Task Group Gauteng Report on Mental Health (Zwi, Radebe, Ratemane, Freeman & Harris,1995). Now, violence was constructed as a destructive heritage of past policies and practices that continued to exert a deleterious influence on communities and individuals. These 38

documents also began to present a more fine-grained taxonomy of violence, discerning such acts as child abuse, women abuse, assault and other forms of criminal violence as discrete subcategories. Their conclusion was that violence posed a major threat to the social and economic development of the country (Zwi et al., 1995), and it was argued that reconstruction and development were contingent on a safe society that assured physical and mental health.

Free download from

Where previously the curative goal had been to return victims of violence to their activist positions on the front line of the anti-apartheid struggle, the focus now was on restoring to victims of violence their capacity to serve as productive citizens. Accordingly, the documents prioritised "victims of violence" for mental health interventions. These victims were portrayed as psychologically wounded individuals in need of adequate care through the establishment and support of crisis centres and counselling services (ANC Health Plan, 1994; Zwi et al, 1995). Elsewhere, in a section that discussed policy frameworks for health care, the Reconstruction and Development Programme stated: "The RDP must aim to promote mental health and increase the quality, quantity and accessibility of mental health support and counselling services, particularly for those affected by domestic or other violence" (Reconstruction and Development Programme, 1994: Repeated mention was made of the need for specialised programmes for victims of violence, including victims of child abuse, women abuse and people at risk for violence owing to substance abuse. Complementing this curative approach within the mental health sphere was an equally reactive stance on the part of the criminal justice and policing sectors, which in emphasising a need for improved detection and punishment of violent perpetrators reinforced the post event focus of mental health, and with it the idea that violence and its consequences could not be prevented, but only controlled.

The New Discipline II: Violence prevention The burgeoning of victim-oriented practices in respect of violence marked the beginning of its translation from a mechanism of sovereign power into a conduit for the productive power of discipline. By the mid-1990s, this was being complemented by an increasing recognition that a curative approach was insufficient, and with it a realisation of the preventive possibilities of epidemiological and risk-factor research into the causes of violence. Thus, while such research had already commenced in the late 1980s (see Nell & Butchart,1989; Knottenbelt,1989; Van der Spuy,1989), it was only four to five years later that it began to attract the attention of the criminal justice, policing and health sectors as a key component in what had become a drive to make violence the object of a preventive regime that aimed to draw everyone into its web of surveillance. This epidemiological renaissance extended the statistical surveillance of violence from the police perspective into the health sector, and from the victim of violence as purely in need of care, to the victim of violence as being at the same time a resource for information relevant to prevention. As this occurred, so hospital casualty wards, clinics and mortuaries began to serve as observatories for monitoring the demographic, personal and situational determinants of violence, alongside the earlier established human rights monitoring groups, police stations and state statistical services. This expansion in the sites from which violence could be scrutinised was to have a number of implications for formal policy. First, in extending the eye of epidemiology through the hospitals, it raised to visibility all those victims of violence who previously had not existed for a regime concerned only with high-profile cases of political violence, revealing (at least for Cape Town and Johannesburg) that of every 10 victims of violence treated in hospital emergency rooms, only one was injured in 39

Free download from

explicitly political conflict (Butchart et al, 1991b; Van der Spuy, 1993). Second, it problematised the perception that because violence was according to the law a criminal act, the best point from which to view it was through the police and court statistics of the criminal justice system. Now, it could be recognised that not all incidents of violence were processed through the criminal justice system, and that for many victims of violence (in South Africa as elsewhere), the health sector was the first and only point of contact, treating at least six times the number of victims who entered the criminal justice system (Butchart, Seedat & Nell, in press; National Committee for Injury Prevention and Control, 1989; Shepherd, Shopland, Pearce & Scully, 1990). Although these recognitions coincided with the emergence of a number of non governmental organisations that applied epidemiological insights in community based approaches to violence prevention (for a review, see Butchart, I996), they did not find rapid translation into formal policy. While the 1994 ANC Health Plan noted that only 15% of violence was political, it failed to elaborate on where the causes of the remaining 85% might lie, or to develop the concept of violence prevention beyond noting the need for preventive programmes. Similarly, the Gauteng Strategic Management Team Report (Zwi et al., 1995) highlighted violence as an important health care problem, but discussed it under secondary and tertiary modalities of care only, underlining the need for more staff to cope with the mental health problems associated with violence and the development of mobile trauma counsellors, but failing to mention violence at the primary health care level. All the policy documents studied failed to develop a comprehensive violence prevention programme that offered a broad analysis of violence incorporating domestic, criminal and community development issues. Despite these failings, the documents did convey an implicit sense of violence as a preventable problem. By continually linking the state of health care to the social context, improvements in all aspects of social life (e.g, housing, employment and social development) were presented as prerequisites for the prevention of violence and promotion of a mentally healthy society. There was an emphasis on restructuring various institutions (e.g. security forces, correctional services) that in the past were instrumental in the creation and maintenance of systematic violence, and through this to cultivate the growth of a human rights culture that would discourage violence (see Mental Health and Substance Abuse Committee, 1995; RDP, 1994, Zwi et al, 1995). Cognitively, at least, violence had by 1995 been radically transformed from a political and criminal issue into a sociological and public health problem, a collective pathology that originated not merely from the formal centres of political power and resistance, but which was caused by the very fabric of society of which it could now be seen as an integral component - the violence in and of everyday life. As a result, the new discourse defined violence as an intersectoral problem, a challenge not for the police, criminal justice, educational or health sectors acting independently, but one that could only be solved through their joint efforts, and, most importantly, through recruitment of the very individuals and communities most affected by it to undertake the task of prevention and control. The 1994 ANC health guidelines advocated a single mental health dispensation. Founded on a primary health care approach, these guidelines emphasised collaboration, community participation, community orientation of services, empowerment of individuals and cost effectiveness. Preventive, promotive, curative and rehabilitative forms of service were to be provided alongside each other on a rational and cost-effectiveness basis (ANC, 1994; RDP, 1994; Mental Health and Substance Abuse Committee, 1995; Zwi et al., 1995), and violence was isolated as one of the most pressing problems requiring the involvement of more than one ministry (see Mental Health and Substance Abuse Committee, 1995; RDP, 1994, Zwi et al., 1995). intersectoral 40

Free download from

planning committees were envisaged as being made up of government departments, non-governmental organisations, consumers, and other mental health care role players, the chief responsibility of these bodies being to enable co-operation and ensure that fragmentation and duplication of services were minimised (Zwi et al., 1995). In May 1996, this vision found further elaboration in the National Crime Prevention Strategy document (National Crime Prevention Strategy Team, 1996), which identified violence as among the top priorities for crime prevention, attributed its occurrence to a broad range of political, social, economic and environmental causes, and stated that the fundamental challenge was to establish a multi-agency preventive task force. The relationship between crime, violence and development necessitates the engagement of the Reconstruction and Development Programme and of developmental agencies. The imperative of delivering comprehensive victim empowerment strategies and services implies the involvement of the Social Welfare and Health departments. The impact of economic deregulation and the need for some forms of regulation to control criminal markets appears to require the participation of the Department of Trade and Industry in any crime prevention strategies. The problems of regional security and illegal immigration necessitate the focused attention of the SANDF, SASS and the Department of Home Affairs respectively (National Crime Prevention Strategy Team, 1996:44). This rhetorical commitment to intersectoriality is only now, as of mid-1998, beginning to be matched by any equivalent shift in practice, with significant portions of the 1997 DACST-funded science council projects focusing on public health interventions in respect of developing information systems for violence and injury surveillance, examining risk factors for violence towards women and children, implementing and evaluating community based demonstration programmes, and preparing the current report on the best local and international practices in respect of violence prevention. However, the approximately five million rand apportioned to these projects pales against the lion’s share of research and development movies that continues to be pumped into the criminal justice system and into "hi-tech" detection and investigation systems, such as those being developed by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research. Thus, although it certainly does appear that South Africa has started to make the transition from a purely criminal justice orientation to a more broad-based public health approach to violence prevention, there remains much to be done in consolidating this shift.

Conclusion Because it is only ever equivalent to what our methods of recording and analysis make it to be, the problem of violence is always a fragile and volatile one, which in the absence of sustained epidemiological surveillance and risk factor analysis will revert to an unanalysed and therefore unmanageable mass that cannot be prevented, only controlled. Contemporary public health technologies, with their emphasis on evidence-led interventions aimed at altering the relationships between people, products and environments that produce violence, provide the quintessential framework in which a scientifically validated set of social realities can serve to fuel a drive toward prevention that is consistent with the conditions of social democracy. For, while historical examples of how public health was exploited in the service of colonial oppression warn us that its power can be abused, they also enable us to learn from the past and so avoid repeating similar errors in the present. In the final analysis, the question must be: If not public health and the preventive sciences of Social medicine, then what? The alternative is already with us in rapidly crystallising form: Society split and fracturing along lines of class and social competence, where the only interests counted are those of the rich, while the poor sink further below the 41

line of visibility to become once again the anonymous crowd of a new sovereignty symbolised by high-rise apartments, cluster housing estates, armed neighbourhood patrols and streets that are empty of all but the poor and the police.

References AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS,1992. Ready to Govern. ANC Policy Guidelines for a Democratic South Africa. Adopted at the National Conference. Published by the Policy Unit of the African National Congress. AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS.1994. A National Health Plan for South Africa. African National Congress.

Free download from

ALBERTYN, J.R., 1932. The poor white problem in South Africa. Report of the Carnegie Commission, Part V. Sociological report. Stellenbosch: Pro-Ecclesia. BERRUETA-CLEMENT, J.R., SCHWEINHART, I.J., BARNETT, W.S., EPSTEIN, A.S, & WEIKART, D.P., 1984. Changed lives. Ypsilanti, Mich.: High/Scope. BIESHEUVEL, S. 1953. A technique for measuring attitudes of educated Africans. Proceedings of the South African Psychological Association, 4:13-20. BIESHEUVEL, S. 1955. The measurement of African attitudes toward European ethical concepts, customs, laws and administration of justice. Journal of the National Institute for Personnel Research, 6(1):5-17. BIESHEUVEL, S. 1957. The influence of social circumstances on the attitudes of educated Africans. South African Journal of Science, 53:309-314. BIKO, S. 1988/1970. We Blacks. In A. Stubbs (ed.) I write what I like (pp. 41-46). Harmandsworth: Penguin Books. BRONKHORST, D. 1995. Truth and Reconciliation, Obstacles and Opportunities for Human Rights. Amsterdam: Amnesty International Dutch Section. BROWN, D.S.O. & NELL, V. 1991. Epidemiology of traumatic brain injury in Johannesburg - I. Methodological issues in a developing country context. Social Science and Medicine, 33:283-287. BULHAN, H.A. 1985. Frantz Fanon and the psychology of oppression. New York: Plenum. BULHAN, H.A.1990. Afrocentric psychology; Perspectives and practice. In: Nicholas, L.J. and Cooper, S, (eds). Psychology and apartheid, 67-78. Johannesburg: Vision Publications. BUTCHART, A. 1996. Injury prevention policy in South Africa: What can be learned from current violence prevention programmes? Paper presented at the Third International Injury Prevention and Control Conference. Melbourne:18-22 February. BUTCHART, A. 1998. The anatomy of power; European constructions of the African body. London: Zed Books. BUTCHART, A. & BROWN, D.S.O.1991. Non-fatal injuries due to interpersonal violence in Johannesburg-Soweto: Incidence, determinants and consequences. Forensic Science International, 52:35-51. BUTCHART, A., KRUGER, J., Lekoba, R. & SMITH, D. Evaluating injury prevention outcome in a developing country context: Lessons from a community-based violence prevention programme. In press,Urbanisation and Health Newsletter.


BUTCHART, A., LEBER, L B. & TERREBLANCHE, M.1994. Imaginary constructions and forensic reconstructions of fatal violence against women; Implications for community violence prevention. Forensic Science International, 64:2I-34. BUTCHART, A., NELL, V., YACH, D,, JOHNSON, K., & RADEBE, B. 199Ia. Epidemiology of non-fatal injuries due to external causes in Johannesburg-Soweto. Part I. Methodology and materials. South African Medical Journal, 79:466-471. BUTCHART A,, NELL, V. & YACH, D., BROWN, D,S,O., ANDERSON, A., RADEBE, B., & JOHNSON, K.1991b. Epidemiology of nonfatal injuries due to external causes in Johannesburg-Soweto. Part II. Incidence and determinants. South African Medical Journal, 79:472-479. COCK J, 1989. Introduction. In J. Cock & L. Nathan (eds.) War and Society: The Militarisation of South Africa. Cape Town: David Philip.

Free download from

COCK, J. 1990. Political Violence. In B.W. McKendrick and W,C. Hoffman (eds,) People and Violence in South Africa. Cape Town: Oxford University Press. COHEN, S. & LANG, C. 1990, Application of principles of community-based programmes. Background paper prepared for the Forum on Youth Violence and Minority Communities: Setting the Agenda for Prevention. Atlanta GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. DE KOOK, V. 1950. Those in Bondage, London: George Allen and Unwin, DE RIDDER, J. 1961. The personality of the urban African in South Africa (a thematic apperception test study, London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. DORRENBOOM, J. 1995. Colours that clash, Unpublished Master’s dissertation. Leiden: University of Leiden. DUBOW, S. 1987. Race, civilization and culture: The elaboration of segregationist discourse in the inter-war years. in S. Marks and S. Trapido (eds.) The politics of race, class and nationalism in twentieth century South Africa, 71-94. Harlow: Longman. EDITORIAL 1912. An urgent question of sociology. South African Medical Record, 10:201-203. EDITORIAL 1968. Violence. South African Medical Journal, 42(9):737. ERASMUS, P.F. 1975. Thematic Apperception Test (TAT-Z). Pretoria: Institute for Psychological and Edumetric Research, Human Sciences Research Council. ERASMUS, P,F, 1984, Manual for the Thematic Apperception Test (Zulu) (TAT-Z). Pretoria; Human Sciences Research Council. FANON, F. 1967. Black skin, white masks. New York: Grove Press. FARRINGTON, D.P. 1989. Early predictors of adolescent aggression and adult violence. Violence and Victims, 4;79-99. FARRINGTON, D.P.1993. Success stories in the prevention of adolescent aggression and youth violence. Plenary presentation to the Second World Injury Prevention and Control Conference. Atlanta G.A.: March. FLISHER, A.J., ZIERVOGEL, C.F., CHALTON, D.O., LEGER, P.H, & ROBERTSON, B.A. 1993. Risk taking behaviour of Cape Peninsula High School students. VII. Violent behaviour. South African Medical Journal, 83:490-494. FOSTER, D. 1991. Historical and legal traces, 1800-1900. In S. Lea and D. Foster (eds.) Perspectives on mental handicap in South Africa. Durban: Butterworths. 43

FOSTER, D. & SKINNER, D. 1990. Detention and violence: Beyond victimology. In N.C. Manganyi and A du Toit (eds.) Political violence and the struggle in South Africa, pp. 205-233. Halfway House: Southern Book Publishers. FOUCAULT, M. 1977. Discipline and punish. New York: Pantheon Books. FOUCAULT, M. 1979. The history of sexuality, Vol. 1. London: Allen Lane. FREEMAN, M. 1992. Providing Mental Health Care for All in South Africa. Structure and Strategy. Johannesburg: University of the Witwatersrand: Centre for Health Policy. GAINER, P.S., WEBSTER, D.W. & CHAMPION, H.R.1993. A youth violence prevention program. Arch Surgery, 128:303-308. GORDON, C. (ed.) 1980. Power/Knowledge; Selected interviews and other writings 1972-1977 by Michel Foucault. Brighton: Harvester Press.

Free download from

HADDON, W.1980. Advances in the epidemiology of injuries as a basis for public policy. Public Health Reports, 95:411-421. HAMBER, B.1995a. Dealing with the Past and the Psychology of Reconciliation. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission: A Psychological Perspective. Paper presented at the 4th International Symposium on the Contributions of Psychology to Peace. Cape Town. HAMBER, B. 1995b. Do Sleeping Dogs Lie? The Psychological Implications of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa. Johannesburg: Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation. HOFFMAN, W.C. & McKendrick, B.W. 1990. The Nature of Violence. In B.W. McKendrick and W.C. Hoffman (eds.) People and Violence in South Africa. Cape Town: Oxford University Press. KARIS, T. & CARTER, G.M. (eds.) 1977. From protest to challenge: A documentary history of African politics in South Africa 1882-1964, Vol. 3 - Challenge and violence 1953-1964. Stanford: Hoover Institution Press. KAZDIN, A.E., SIEGEL, T.C. & BASS, D.1993. Cognitive problem-solving skills training and parent management training in the treatment of antisocial behaviour in children. Journal of Clinical and Consulting Psychology, 60:733747. KELLERMAN, A., RIVARA, F.P. & RUSHFORTH, N.B., BANTON, J.G., REAY, D.T., FRANCISCO, J.T., LOCCI, A.B., PRODZINSKI, J., HACKMAN, B.B. & SOMES, G. 1993. Gun ownership as a risk factor for homicide in the home. New England Journal of Medicine, 329:1084-1091. KNOTTENBELT, J.D. 1989. Trauma, the scourge of modern society (editorial). South African Medical Journal, 75:1-2. KRITZMAN, L.D. (ed.) 1988. Michel Foucault: Politics, philosophy, culture; Interviews and other writings 1977- 1984. New Yark Routledge. LAIRD M., Syropoulos, M. & BLACK, S. 1996. Aggression and violence; The challenge for Detroit Schools. Lions-Quest International. LAUBSCHER, B.J.J. 1937. Sex, custom and psychopathology (a study of South African pagan natives). London: George Routledge and Sons. LERER, L.B. 1992. Women, homicide and alcohol in Cape Town, South Africa. Forensic Science International, 53:93-99. 44

LERER, L.B. 1993a. "Morti vivos docent": What death teaches us about injury. Trauma Review, 2(1):7. LERER, L.B. 1993b. Improving mortality data in South Africa: Review of next of kin statements to determine cause of death in police certification. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 43:248-254. LERER, L.B., MATZOPOLOUS, R. & BRADSHAW, D. 1995. A profile of non-natural mortality in the Cape Tawn metropole 1994. Cape Town; Medical Research Council. LERER, L.B. & MATZOPOLOUS, R.G.1995. Meeting the challenge of rail commuter injuries; The public health approach (technical report, community health research group). Cape Town: Medical Research Council. LEVETT, A. 1989. Psychological trauma and childhood. Psychology in Society, 12: 1932.

Free download from

MAcCRONE, L.D. 1957. Race attitudes in South Africa; Historical, experimental and psychological studies. Johannesburg: Witwatersrand University Press. MANGANYI, N.C. 1972. Body image boundary differentiation and self-steering behaviour in African paraplegics. Journal of Personality Assessment, 3(1):4550. MANGANYI, N.C.1973. Being-Black-in-the-world. Johannesburg: Ravan Press. McCULLOCH, J. 1995. Colonial psychiatry and the African mind. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. MCDOWELL, D., Loftin, C. & WIERSMA, B. 1992. A comparative study of the preventive effects of mandatory sentencing laws for gun crimes. The Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, 83:378-394. MENTAL HEALTH & SUBSTANCE ABUSE COMMITTEE 1995. Report on Mental Health and Substance Abuse. Unpublished policy document submitted to the Department of Health, Gauteng. MERCY, J.A., ROSENBERG, M.L., POWELL, K.E., BROOME, C.V. & ROPER, W.L.1993. Public health policy for violence prevention. Health Affairs, Winter Edition, 7-29. NATIONAL COMMITTEE FOR INJURY PREVENTION AND CONTROL 1989. Injury Prevention: Meeting the Challenge. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 5(3): supplement. NATIONAL CRIME PREVENTION STRATEGY TEAM 1996. National crime prevention strategy. Unpublished typescript, dated May 1996. Place of publication unlisted: Various SA Government Departments. NATIONAL TRAUMA RESEARCH PROGRAMME 1994. A guide to rural injury data capture. Cape Town: Medical Research Council. NELL, V. & BROWN, D.S.O. 1991. Epidemiology of traumatic brain injury in Johannesburg - II. Morbidity, mortality and etiology. Social Science and Medicine, 33:289-296. NELL, V. & Butchart A. 1989. Studying violence in a South African city. Critical Health, 28:44-49. NORTHROP, D., jACKLIN, B., COHEN, S, & WILSON-BREWER, R. 1990. Violence prevention strategies targeted towards high-risk minority youth, US Department of Health and Human Services and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 45

PERKEL, A.1990. Psychotherapy with detainees: A theoretical basis. Psychology in Society, 13:4-16. PHILLIPS, R.E. 1948. The Bantu in the city. A study of cultural adjustment on the Witwatersrand. Lovedale; The Lovedale Press, POSEL, D.1990. Symbolizing violence: State and media discourse in television coverage of township protest 1985-7. In N.C. Manganyi and A. Du Toit (eds.) Political violence and the struggle in South Africa, 154-17I. Halfway House: Southern Books. RAYNER, M. 1990. From Biko to Wendy Orr: The problem of medical accountability in contexts of political violence and torture. In N.C. Manganyi and A. Du Toit (eds.). Political violence and the struggle in South Africa, pp.172-204. Halfway House: Southern Books.

Free download from

READER’S DIGEST 1988. Illustrated history of South Africa. New York: The Reader's Digest Association. RECONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME 1994. The Reconstruction and Development Programme: A Policy Framework. African National Congress. SACHS, W. 1937. Black Hamlet: The mind of an African negro revealed by psychoanalysis, London: Geoffrey Bles. SHEPHERD, T.P., SHOPLAND, M., PEARCE, N.X., & SCULLY, C.1990. Pattern, severity and aetiology of injuries in victims of assault. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 83:75-78. SHERWOOD, E.T.1957. On the designing of TAT pictures, with special reference to a set for an African people assimilating western culture. Journal of Social Psychology, 45:161-190. SILOVE, D. 1990. Doctors and the state: Lessons from the Biko case. Social Science and Medicine, 30:417-429. SOLOMONS, K. 1988. A contribution to a theory of the dynamic mechanisms of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in South African detainees. Psychology in Society, 11:18-30, SOUTH AFRICAN INSTITUTE OF RACE RELATIONS 1986. Survey of race relations in South Africa 1986. Johannesburg: South African Insitute for Race Relations. SPITZ, S., EASTWOOD, R. & VERRYN, P.1990. The torture goes on: The psychology of restrictions. Psychology in Society, 13:17-26. STRAKER, G. 1987. The continuous traumatic stress syndrome - the single therapeutic interview. Psychology in Society, 8:46-79. SWARTZ, L., & LEVETT, A. 1989. Political repression and children in South Africa: The social construction of damaging effects. Social Science and Medicine, 28:741750. TRANSVAAL ARCHIVES DEPOT. (202/10 LD 1786). Dr J.G. Visser: Re liberation of native lunatics from the lunatic asylum. February-March 1910. TRANSVAAL ARCHIVES DEPOT. (CS 863/14966). Lunacy Amendment Act 1908. VAN DER Spuy, J.1989. More about trauma. South African Journal of Continuing Medical Education, 7:721-726. VAN DER Spuy, J.W. 1993. Violence in perspective. Trauma Review, 1(2):1.


VAN ONSELEN, C.1982. Studies in the social and economic history of the Witwatersrand, Vol. 2. New Nineveh. Johannesburg: Ravan Press. VAUGHAN, M.199I. Curing their ills; Colonial power and African illness. Cambridge: Polity Press. Vogelman, L.1995. The Pathway to Murder; A Social Psychological Study of the Evolution of Violence in an Industrial Dispute. Unpublished Ph.D. Thesis, University of London, Department of Organisational Psychology, Faculty of Science, Birkbeck College, London. YACH, D. & TOLLMAN, S. 1993. Public health initiatives in South Africa in the 1940s and 1950s: Lessons for a post-apartheid era. American Journal of Public Health, 83:1043-1050.

Free download from

ZWI, A.B. 1987. The political abuse of medicine and the challenge of opposing it. Social Science and Medicine, 25:649-657. ZWI, A.B. & Ugalde, A.1989. Towards an epidemiology of political violence in the third world. Social Science and Medicine, 28:633-642. ZWI, R., RADEBE, E., RATEMANE, S., FREEMAN, M. & HARRIS, L.1995. Mental Health Report - SMT Task Group Gauteng Province. Unpublished policy document submitted to the Strategic Management Team for Health, Gauteng. Footnote *

This chapter is adapted from an earlier version of this paper that appeared as Butchart, A., Hamber, B., Terre Blanche, M. & Seedat, M. Violence power and mental health in twentiethcentury South Africa. In: D. Foster, M. Freeman & Y. Pillay (eds.) Mental Health Police Issues for South Africa.



!"#$ %&'($')*+,('$ !" #$%&'%"()*+('*,-,./"+%0%1"2))-*3%0*,4"*4"05(")$(6(40*,4",7" *48&$/"%4+"3$*'(" 9":;"6%4"+($"//2+0!'20,-5&/,1-5!_1-/B!(+,[email protected]+1,3&/,!.:!$1+/[email protected],8!VMMTF!


Z! >//2+0!=&+,H&0,![&+1-/7!(+,[email protected]+1,3&/,!.:!$1+/[email protected],8!VMMTF!

Free download from

!,$(3'(!E)'=F!EY+/[email protected]!=,&&/[email protected]!VMMTO! =,&&/[email protected]!#,!(415VMMT.!=,&&/[email protected]!#,!(45VMMJO!Y+/[email protected]!6&9&/!#,!(45! VMMT.!6&9&/8!#,!(4?8!VMM\F! $%-4!4,29A!G+4!9./&!921-/7!VMMR!+/9!5.C&1&9!:+,+0!+/9!/./;:+,+0!-/!3+(4.($"


















! R&$%-"?48&$/"/>0('"

! !


d/,-0!VM\[email protected]&&9!0-3-,4!G&1&!\[email protected]%!.1!71&+,&1?!c1.3!VM\"!,.!VM#\!,%&1&!G+4!+!/+,-./G-9&!JJ! [email protected]%[email protected]&&9!0-3-,?!P/!VM#\!4.3&!4,+,&4!-/51&+4&9!0-3-,4!./[email protected],-./4!,[email protected]%?!_+,+!:1.3!c&9&1+0! L-7%G+A!>93-/-4,1+,-./!


Free download from

$%-4!4,29A!+/+0A4&9!N#J!-/)4F!.:!R8R#!7UVRR!30!.1!%-7%&1?!$%&! 3+00!/+,-./+0!+/9!5.332/-,A!0&+9&14!4%.209!1&:1+-/!:1.3!4,+,&3&/,4! 1&-/:.15-/7!+/7&1!+4!+/[email protected],+H0&!+/9!2/9&14,+/9+H0&!G+A!.:!1&+5,-/7!,.! ,%+,!G%-5%!./&!9.&4!/.,!0-B&?!


;! I&+9&14!+/9!.,%[email protected][email protected]&!.:!-/:02&/5&!4%.209!9.!,%&-1!H&4,!,.!4,[email protected][email protected]&! +G+A!:1.3!+771&44-C&!,+0B8!5./:1./,+,-./8!-/,-3-9+,-./!+/9!3+44!+5,-./!G-,%! [email protected][email protected],&/,-+0!+4!3&,%.94!,.!4&,,[email protected],&4?!$%&!3.1&!:1&W2&/,0A!./&! ,21/4!,.!:.15&!,.!+991&44!9-::-520,!-442&48!,%&!3.1&!-,!H&5.3&4!,%&!/.13!,.! [email protected]&34!HA!:.15&:20!3&+/4?!


Z! ^C&1A!1&+4./+H0&!4,[email protected]!4%.209!H&!,+B&/!,.!5.3H+,!,%&!+H24&!.:!+05.%.0!+/9! 91274!+4!,%&1&!-4!-11&:2,[email protected]:!,%+,!,%-4!-4!+!C&1A!4,1./7!5+,+0A4,!:.1! C-.0&/5&!-/!,%-4!5.2/,1A?!


P/!1&7+19!,.!,1+::-5!,1+23+8!3+24,1+0-+/[email protected]&1-&/5&!+/9! [email protected]&1,-4&!4%[email protected]&9?!

>!4,1./7!3&44+7&!4%.209!H&!9-44&3-/+,&9!+7+-/4,!912/B&/!G+0B-/7!./[email protected]! ,1+::-5!G+A4?!^C&/!-:!-,!G.209!H&!+93-/-4,1+,-C&0A!9-::-520,!,.!&/:.15&!+!]>)!0-3-,! :[email protected]&9&4,1-+/48!./&!4%.209!5./4-9&1!3+B-/7!-,[email protected]!,%+,!50+-34!:.1! [email protected]&/4+,-./!:1.3!,%&!(.+9!>55-9&/,!c2/9!G.209!H&!42H>*8!'?I?VMMN?!E+!#%,&'(,#!->!,D#!3+&,!/-%,!->!$-(0!,$(>>&/!/-44&%&-+%!&+!:-3,D! E>$&/(!>-$!67768!61&,.1-+D!)=P(8!_-C-4-./!.:!(.+94!+/9!$1+/[email protected],!$&5%/.0.7A?! $&5%/-5+0!([email protected],!MVUVVXUV?! _^6>($'^*$!Sc!$(>*=6S($!VMMT?!>05.%.0D!(.+9!24&1!91-/B-/7!1+,&4!:.1!=.2,%! >:1-5+!-/!VMMJ?!9$-F#/,!B#"-$,!((MJU#RM?! _^6>($'^*$!Sc!$(>*=6S($!VMMT?!=&+,H&0,!G&+1-/7!1+,&4!:.1!=.2,%!>:1-5+!-/!VMMJ?! 9$-F#/,!B#"-$,!((MJU#VR?! _^![^$8!]?8!Y>*!_^([email protected]!j?!o!>](>L>'=8!*?!#,!(41VMM"?!(P==.!E!G3&0#!,-!$3$(4! -/($8!_?j?j?8!'^d'>**8!)?!o!]S$L>8!j?]?)?!VMMJ8!AD#!5%+/7-/7!"(,,#$+!->! "#+#,$(,&+G!,-$%-!,$(3'(!&+!LC(M343NO(,(4!N!(!/4&+&/(4!(+0!"(,D-4-G&/(4!$#*&#C?! =>'j8!#JEVVFDVV\N;VV\"?! 6^_^*8!'?'?VMM\?!E034,!"#0#%,$&(+!,$(>>&/!,$(3'(!&+!#$#+/#!,-!,D#!$-4#!->!(4/-D-41!d/@2H0-4%&9!6%?_?!,%&4-4?!d)$8!c+520,A!.:! '&9-5-/[email protected]+1,3&/,!.:!=217&1A?! 6^_^*8!'?'?8!'>(>P=8!=?8!>](>L>'=8!*?!o!Y>*!_^([email protected]!j?[?!VMM\?! P/[email protected]@[email protected]+,&!+,,&/9+/5&!.1!1+,-./+0!H&%+C-.214!:-3,D!E>$&/(+!P-3$+(4!->!93Q4&/! R#(4,D5!#\EJFDTT#;T\N?! 6^_^*!'?'?!o!=P_md'S8!*?VMM\?!=2H4,+/5&!+H24&!421C&-00+/5&!+3./7!,1+23+! @+,-&/,4!;,1+23+!+/9!9127!4,[email protected]/+0!1&420,4?!A$(3'(!B#*&#C5!JEXFD\;#?!

Free download from

6^_^*8!'?'?8!Y>*!_^([email protected]!j?[?!o!>](>L>'=8!*?>?VMMT?!$%&!-/[email protected]@[email protected]+,&!24&!.:! ,&1,-+1A!,1+23+!:+5-0-,-&4?!A$(3'(!(+0!S'#$G#+/)!=#0&/&+#8VXEVFDNR;NV?! (b_^(8!_?VMMT?!$%&!+/+0A4-4!.:[email protected]!2/9&14,+/9-/7!,%[email protected]&44!.:[email protected]! [email protected]&/,?!E00&/,&-+5!MVEMFDVNTJ;VN\R?! ='P$L8!i?=?!VM#\?!d/-/,&/,-./+0!-/3H&1!([!_200!L]!E&94F?!*!_^(!=6db8!j?[?!VMMX?!$1+23+!-/!=.2,%!>:1-5+D!4.3&!:-/9-/74!+/[email protected][email protected]&5,-C&4?! L&03!62H0-4%-/7!).!6,A!EI,9F?!$1+23+!X#($Q--K!";M?! Y>*!_^(!=6db8!j?[?VMMX?!Y-.0&/5&!-/[email protected][email protected]&5,-C&?!$1+23+!B#*&#C5!VENFDV?! Y>*!_^(!=6db8!j?[?!VMMT?!]0..9!+05.%.0!0&C&04!-/!,1+::-5!0&7-40+,-./!;!G%+,!-4!1&+0-4,-5?! A$(3'(!B#*&#C5!"EXFD";J?! Y>*!_^(!=6db8!j?[?!VMMT?!=.2,%!>:1-5+/!1.+9!,1+::-5!,1+23+!4,+,-4,-54D!VMJR;VMM"?! A$(3'(!(+0!S'#$G#+/)!=#0&/&+#5!VXEVFDXJ;X#?! Y>*!_^(!=6db8!j?[?!VMMT?!$%&!&5./[email protected]+5,!.:!,1+23+?!:E!Y-+#!(+0!P-&+,! :3$G#$)5!TENFDJ;VV?!



Y>*!_^(!=6db8!j?[?!o!_^![^$8!]?!VMMV?!$1+23+!;!,.9+A!+/9!,.3.11.G!E^9-,.1-+0F?! =>'j8!\MDTV;TN?! Y>*!g(>IP*i^*8![?*?8![LP$$>g^(8!=?!o!Y>*!_^(!=6db?!j?8!#,!(41VMMV?!>05.%.0!+/9! ,%&!-/%=&0,/'.02&0%(2.3&-(



Free download from

B#33.0C>($"#>&>(.4(/067'8(2.3&-( H-77(&K0!/(7'9!EH-77(&A!"LMNO!I,-&6.0+!$#)&/01!"LLPF!5:.970!(&!*+'!*,-7.*.(&-9! '2.7'/.(9(;.1-9!)-1*(,0!()!-;'&*A!+(0*!-&7!'&8.,(&/'&*!5/5#-N>.5/.= 57-%7'#-(









S%[email protected]\@!!






Free download from

>!/(,'!1(/29'G!-&7!1(/2,'+'&0.8'!-22,(-1+!.0!:0'7!.&!*+'!2,'1'7'D2,(1''7!/(7'9! 7'8'9(2'7!59*+(:;+!*+'!2,'1'7'D2,(1''7!/(7'9!.0!1(/2,'+'&0.8'!-&7!+-0!5''&!:0'7!*(!29-&!-! 5,(-7!,-&;'!()!2:59.1!+'-9*+!.&*',8'&*.(&0A!*+','!-,'!-!&:/5',!()!2,(59'/0! -00(1.-*'7!4.*+!.*O! •

a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


2,(3'1*0!-,'!9./.*'7!.&!*',/0!()!).&-&1.-9!,'0(:,1'0A!/-&2(4',A!06.990A!$#'?A!7'1.0.(&0! :0:-999*+(:;+!*+'!2,(59'/D(,.'&*'7!2,(1'00! 1:9/.&-*'0!.&!*+'!7'8'9(2/'&*!()!02'1.).1!0(9:*.(&0!-&7!.&*',8'&*.(&0!)(,! ./29'/'&*-*.(&A!2,(8.0.(&!0+(:97!-90(!5'!/-7'!7:,.&;!29-&&.&;!-&7!./29'/'&*-*.(&! )(,!'8-9:-*.(&!()!*+'!,'0:9*.&;!2,(;,-//'?! XTY( 9&%%/01=.'/&0%&3($'.5&>>(

Free download from

@+'!0'**.&;D(,.'&*'7!2,(1'00!1(/29'/'&*0!*+'!2,(59'/D(,.'&*'7!2,(1'00!-&7!-./0!-*! 2,(/(*.&;!(,!.&1,'-0.&;!9'8'90!()!0-)'*22,(-1+!*(!e(//:&.*!9(;.1-9!),-/'4(,6!)(,!1-*';(,.U.&;!+.;+4-\A!d?a?A!]%@@IVWi=%\A!i?A!b>e^W\jRWA!i?A!We^[email protected]!SA!`! Bc=Ha>gA!=?A"LLM?!S,'8'&*.&;!1,./'X!a+-*!4(,60A!4+-*!7('0&K*A!4+-*K0! 2,(/.0.&;?!>!,'2(,*!*(!*+'!c&.*'7!=*-*'0!e(&;,'00A!2,'2-,'7!)(,!*+'!\-*.(&-9! R&0*.*:*'!()!f:0*.1'?!>8-.9-59'!(&9.&'!E+**2X__444?&13,0?(,;_4(,60F?!

Free download from

?..%0.%&>( "!

H'-9*+!2,(/(*.(&!+-0!5''&!7').&'7!-0!C2,(1'00!()!'&-59.&;!2'(29'!*(!.&1,'-0'! 1(&*,(9!(8',!*+'!7'*',/.&-&*0!()!*+'.,!+'-9*+C!E],''&!`!^,':*',A!"LL"X"N[F!




Chapter 11 Addressing the underlying causes of crime and violence in South Africa

Free download from

Tony Emmett This final chapter brings together the various insights and conclusions from the case studies and relates these to the public health model and recent research on crime prevention. In doing so the chapter makes use of both international and local research findings, with a view to identifying those strategies that have proved effective in addressing the underlying causes of crime and violence. Considerable use is made of the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) report to the United States Congress on crime prevention (Sherman et al., 1996). This is probably the most comprehensive and scientifically rigorous review on crime prevention ever undertaken. Its uncompromising focus on what works and what does not work in crime prevention also makes it an ideal vehicle for integrating the findings of this study and identifying approaches to crime prevention that have the potential to be effective under South African conditions.


The international research findings are evaluated against, and related to, South African conditions. In particular, attention is focused on two major issues that impact on crime and violence in South Africa: social disintegration as a consequence of apartheid and racial oppression, and the political transition to a post-apartheid society. Both of these issues are in turn related to the social capital debate and the recent public health literature that links crime and violence to economic inequality and the breakdown of social cohesion. The need for comprehensive and multisectoral crime prevention programmes is also recast in the terms of social capital. Finally the chapter explores various strategies and intervention that may be used to build social capital and strengthen crime prevention in South Africa, and offers some guidelines for the development of more effective strategies for combating crime and violence.

A scientific (knowledge-based) approach to crime prevention In the first chapter we pointed out that one of the major characteristics of the public health approach is its emphasis on research findings as a basis for interventions. This approach has been clearly illustrated in the case studies, which place considerable emphasis on the importance of research, both as a basis for action and in the measurement of outcomes flowing from action. As Sherman (1996b: 3) states: "Crime prevention is defined not by intentions or methods, but by results.” Ensuring punishment of criminal activity through the criminal justice system is therefore seen as only one possible tool for achieving the prevention of crime, and "what works best is defined by the data from research findings, not from ideologically driven assumptions about human nature". This approach clearly distinguishes between crime prevention as a political issue and as a scientific issue. In South Africa crime has emerged as a major political concern with intense ideological and emotional overtones. This places various obstacles in the way of a rational and scientific approach to crime prevention. Against this


background, the experience of disease and injury prevention provides some valuable pointers on the path towards a more rational and knowledge-based approach to crime prevention. While health issues also have important ideological and emotional overtones, these have generally been less intense than those associated with crime, and scientific evidence has largely gained the upper hand in health debates. The public health model therefore has considerable relevance not only for creating more enlightened public attitudes to crime prevention, but also to the strategies used to prevent crime.

Free download from

Recent international research findings have challenged many of the entrenched public attitudes to crime and crime prevention: Studies demonstrate little evidence that continuing the policies of the past several decades emphasizing the increased use of incarceration will have a major impact on reducing crimes at this point in time. As incarceration rates grow there appear to be diminished returns (e.g. reduced impact on crime rates) because lower-rate offenders are being locked up. It may also be counterproductive by limiting the deterrent effect of prison because people have less fear of incarceration. The impact on minority 2

communities has been disastrous (Sherman, 1996e:40)

Similar conditions apply to popular attitudes and assumptions about policing. For example, the scientific evidence does not support the common assumption that increasing the size of a police force significantly reduces crime. There is also evidence that reducing police response time does not reduce crime (Sherman,1996d:7-9). Another consistent finding of the international literature is that neighbourhood watch programmes are generally ineffective at preventing crime: The primary problem found by the evaluations is that the areas with highest crime rates are the most reluctant to organise ... Many people refuse to host or attend community meetings, in part because they distrust their neighbours. Middle-class areas, in which trust is higher, generally have little crime to begin with, making measurable effect on crime almost impossible to achieve. The program cannot even be justified on the basis of reducing middle-class fear of crime and flight from the city, since no such effects have been found. Rather, Skogan (1990) finds evidence that Neighbourhood Watch increases fear of crime (Sherman,1996d:19). Clearly these findings need to be tested under South African conditions. For example, it can be argued that crime is more mobile or less community-bound in South Africa than it is in the United States, where the major evaluations of neighbourhood watch programmes have been undertaken. The findings of the Eldorado Park and Meyerspark case studies support the international findings that people in middleclass areas are more willing to organise against crime than those in poor communities. Residents in the affluent suburb of Meyerspark perceived crime as originating from outside the community and were therefore more prepared to cooperate with their neighbours in preventing crime. Those in the informal settlements of Mandela Square and Slovo Park, however, generally perceived crime as originating from within the community and were therefore more reluctant to co-operate with neighbours. In fact, a significant number of respondents in these communities isolated themselves from the community to protect themselves from crime. Bearing in mind the exploratory nature of these case studies and therefore their limited potential for generalisation, this suggests that while our middle-class suburbs may lend themselves more easily to community-based strategies, these strategies are less likely to succeed in poor communities. 197

Another major trend emerging in contemporary crime prevention is the recognition of the complexity of crime and therefore the need for specific strategies and differentiated responses to the different forms and contexts of crime and violence. For example, research has shown that arrests of perpetrators of domestic violence prevent crime in neighbourhoods with low unemployment and high marriage rates, but increase crime in areas of high unemployment and low marriage rates (Sherman, 3.

Free download from

1996:3) Other examples of the complexity of crime prevention include findings that traffic enforcement may reduce robbery and gun crime, that the optimal deterrent effects of a police patrol can be produced by a 15-minute presence in a "hot spot", and that prevention effects generally fade over time without modification and renewal of police practices. This complexity, together with the recognition that increasing the size of the police force and reducing response time may have little effect on crime rates, has led to recommendations for more focused and differentiated strategies for the police (Sherman, 1996d: 25). As in the case of policing, research on crime prevention in the context of the criminal justice system shows that "no one strategy is appropriate for all offenders and all situations. Careful system planning is required to maximise the crime prevention potential of these different strategies" (MacKenzie, 1996:38).

Evaluating prevention strategies A major aspect of the knowledge-based approach to crime and violence prevention is the emphasis on the systematic evaluation of crime and violence prevention strategies. This is another area in which the public health approach and recent methods of crime prevention coincide. For example, the NIJ study undertaken for the United States Congress (Sherman et al, 1996) repeatedly stresses the importance of scientific evaluation, arguing that "the effectiveness of most crime prevention strategies will remain unknown until the nation invests more in evaluating them" (Sherman,1996e:1). The emphasis on scientific evaluation is based on the argument that crime prevention should be defined by its results, and not by intentions or methods. The only reliable way to determine whether programmes or policies are producing the desired results is to evaluate them scientifically. The case studies in this book show that, overall, very little outcome-evaluation research has been conducted on crime and violence prevention programmes in South Africa. While many of these programmes show signs of promise, it is not possible on the basis of existing information to provide definitive answers to whether they are producing the desired results, and whether they should therefore be continued, discontinued, extended or modified. The case studies also suggest that programmes often experience difficulties in raising funds for evaluation because fenders are less prepared to provide money for research than they are for interventions. However, it is not only funding that is required for evaluation, but also the appropriate management of such funding. Evaluation research, in particular impact or outcome evaluation, is expensive, and South Africa has relatively limited resources for research. The limited funding that is available must therefore be allocated in such a way as to produce the optimal results. Where funding for specific outcome evaluations is not available, one possible approach is to base decision making on international research findings and to use more qualitative, or rather less expensive methodologies to determine whether programmes are having similar effects to those produced elsewhere. 198

Given our scarce resources, the question of which programmes should be evaluated is crucial. Even within the context of the United States, the assumption that all programmes should be evaluated is questioned. For example, the NIJ study concludes that "the requirement that everything be evaluated has resulted in almost nothing being evaluated. ... Spending large amounts of money for strong evaluations in a few sites is far mare cost-effective than spending little amounts of money for weak evaluations in thousands of sites" (Sherman, 1996e:15). The report also argues that evaluation funds should be conserved for impact assessments, and that evaluations should be conducted using high levels of scientific method.

Free download from

While these findings cannot be uncritically applied to South African conditions, there is a clear case for devoting more resources to evaluation research, particularly in the light of the many new and innovative programmes that have been launched in recent years. Similarly, South Africa cannot afford to waste scarce funding on many weak evaluations that provide little reliable information on whether programmes work or not.

A comprehensive approach to crime and violence prevention One of the most distinctive features of the public health approach is its emphasis on comprehensiveness, and the need to approach problems of crime, violence and injury at various levels. For example, in their comprehensive review of injury prevention projects with aboriginal populations in Canada, the United States and elsewhere, Frankish et al. (1993;119) reach the following general conclusions: •

Interventions that are limited to changing individual behaviours do not have a sustained impact on preventing or decreasing the occurrence of injuries.

The use of individual-specific behaviour-change projects is most effective when coupled with other strategies such as surveillance, enforcement and legislative strategies.

The most successful attempts to decrease the occurrence of the most serious injuries have involved modifying the environment.

Taken together, these three principles point to the need for comprehensive approaches in injury prevention. The emphasis on comprehensiveness is also evident in a number of the case studies presented in this book. It is illustrated, for example, by. •

The National Trauma Research Programme's emphasis on addressing injury prevention at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels

The Centre for Peace Actions emphasis on combining behavioural change with environmental changes

The KwaZulu-Natal Survivors of Violence Programme's attempts to address problems of violence not only at the level of the individual, but also of small groups, communities and the society as a whole.

A similar preoccupation with comprehensiveness is evident in the various public health and health promotion models examined in the previous chapter. As argued in that chapter, the major purpose of these models is to remind practitioners of the 199

different variables and levels at which prevention can be addressed and of the complex interrelationships between levels and variables.

Free download from

Comprehensiveness has often been associated with multidisciplinary and intersectoral approaches, and even used interchangeably with these terms. There are key differences between intersectoral co-ordination and comprehensiveness. The involvement of many different agencies in a programme does not necessarily secure comprehensiveness. Comprehensive programmes can be implemented by a single agency. For this reason the issues of intergovernmental and intersectoral coordination are dealt with elsewhere in this chapter. The public health model's emphasis on comprehensiveness is important when we consider that the major focus in the criminal justice system is on punishing, incapacitating, deterring and rehabilitating individual perpetrators, and that it performs its functions largely within a single sector or institutional setting of the society. A further feature of the criminal justice system that distinguishes it from the public health approach, is its essentially reactive nature, that is, it responds to crimes after they occur. The major emphasis of the public health model, on the other hand, is on prevention before the event.

Focusing on social and institutional issues A comprehensive approach to prevention has also helped to shift the focus towards areas of intervention that have been neglected in the past, and in particular to the social and institutional risk factors associated with crime. As the NIJ report suggests, crime prevention is a consequence of various institutional forces, many of which are informal and natural. Families, communities, schools and labour markets all exert informal social controls, or pressures to conform to the law, which have little to do with the threat of punishment. It has been argued that all forms of crime prevention strategies may only be effective within institutional contexts that are strong enough to support them. This is because families, communities, schools, churches and work contexts discourage crime by creating commitments to conventional life patterns that would be endangered by crime. There is considerable evidence from international studies to support this argument. For example, Sherman, 1996b: 7) states that: In study after study, evidence emerges that crime prevention programs are more likely to take root, and more likely to work, in communities that need them least. Conversely, the evidence shows that communities with the greatest crime problems are also the hardest to reach through innovative program efforts. The literature shows strong agreement between both scholars and policy makers that "strong parental attachments to consistently disciplined children in watchful and supportive communities are the best vaccine against street crime and violence" (Sherman, 1996b:5). Informal social controls often involve some degree of shame or disgrace. As the sociologist Emile Durkheim pointed out more than a century ago, "it is shame which doubles most punishments, and which increases with them" (cited by Sherman,1996b;4). There are many examples in South Africa of how closely-knit communities have discouraged crime by consciously using shame and disgrace against perpetrators.


However, the role of informal social controls becomes problematic when institutions like the family and community break down, and are no longer able to exert the 200

pressures necessary to uphold the law. Social and medical scientists have long documented the social disintegration of black communities in South Africa under the assault of colonialism, apartheid and racial oppression For example, in a prophetic article published in 1991, Ramphele (1991:15) warned: Social disintegration will not disappear with the institution of a democratically elected government, as some people would like us to believe. On the contrary, a democratically elected government will have greater difficulties dealing with lawlessness, criminality and irresponsibility, because it is likely to have a greater .5

responsiveness to populist demands and critiques

Free download from

In her article, Ramphele analyses the causes and consequences of social disintegration in black communities. Among the symptoms of disintegration, she lists the following: •

Family breakdowns, with increasing divorce rates, separation, single parenthood and teenage pregnancy

Breakdown of the authority of parents and teachers

High unemployment and unemployability rates

High alcohol and drug abuse

Low performance in all spheres of life, including school and skills training

High crime rates and endemic violence at all levels of social interaction

Despair and acceptance of the victim image

Flight of skills and positive role models from the townships into higher-income areas.

Although black communities have suffered the greatest degree of disintegration, this social pathology is also evident in sections of the white community, and Ramphele cites family murders, and state and political violence as examples. Nor is this pathology a purely economic problem, because not all poor communities have shown the same degree of Social disintegration. The causes of social disintegration in black communities are complex, and include colonial conquest, subordination and repression, dispossession and impoverishment, rapid and massive urbanisation following the lifting of restrictions on movement, inadequate social services and infrastructure, forced removals and other disruptions of communities, the flight of potential role models from the townships, the destruction of family life by migrant labour and conditions in the hostels, the system of Bantu Education, disruption of schools, and indifferent or hostile job markets. Ramphele also points to a number of social and political developments that helped speed up the process of disintegration. These include the progressive alienation of young people from adult leaders and parents following the Sharpeville massacre, the involvement of children in the frontline of resistance, the politics of making South Africa ungovernable, school boycotts, people's courts, and the brutalisation of both victims and perpetrators by widespread violence.


These diverse but systematically related factors have placed increasing strains on social relations, helped to entrench violence as a means of settling disputes, and have disrupted or destroyed community institutions and authority structures. In addition, some of the survival strategies adopted by black people in the face of hardship and repression have contributed to the process of disintegration. For example, Ramphele (1991:13) warns that "crime as a means of survival may become a way of life.” The development of a victim image encourages a culture of entitlement, and the use of tradition as a resource can lead to its misuse by powerful groups, or as a justification for irresponsible behaviour. The central conclusion of Ramphele's article is that social disintegration in the black community is a threat to all South Africans:

Free download from

It is a problem which requires an investment in time and resources, if we are to avoid a downward spiral. There may well be a point of no return in the escalating violence, which will engulf whole communities ... (Ramphele, 1991:16)

Social disintegration and crime While the role of poverty and unemployment in generating crime has been the subject of considerable attention and debate, the relationship of lawlessness and violence to the disintegration of the social fabric has received considerably less attention. There is also little evidence of systematic attempts to address the problems identified by Ramphele. These findings are consistent with conditions in the United States, where a failure to address problems of social integration has also been identified. For example, the NIJ study found that there was a substantial disconnection between what is known about community causes of serious violence and what this nation is doing about those causes. The scientific evidence that communities matter is strong. The evidence that serious crime is concentrated in a very small number of communities is even stronger. But the link between those facts and the design of prevention programs is very thin indeed (Sherman, 1996e: 23). The primary conclusion of this massive study is that the effectiveness of crime prevention in the United States will depend heavily on directing efforts at urban neighbourhoods where youth violence is highly concentrated. Substantial reductions in national rates of serious crime can only be achieved by prevention in areas of concentrated poverty, where the majority of all homicides in the nation occur, and where homicide rates are 20 times the national average (Sherman, 1996a:1). The report also argues that effective crime prevention in high-violence communities may require simultaneous interventions at several institutional levels, including communities, families, schools, labour markets, places (e.g, high-risk areas or "hot spots") and the police and criminal justice systems. There are several reasons why communities are regarded as central to crime prevention. Firstly, they provide the context in which all other institutions, such as families, schools, commercial enterprises, police and the criminal justice system, must operate. The success or failure of these institutions is therefore intimately linked with the community contexts in which they operate (Sherman, 1996c:1). Secondly, as crime originates from communities, the effectiveness of the criminal justice system often depends upon the community, family, and labour market contexts into which the offender returns home. "In a very important sense 202

correctional programs compete with the same home conditions that led the offender into correctional hands in the first place. Making corrections work, at least for the offenders it treats, may require the same changes of institutional context needed to make programmes and practices in other settings more effective" (Sherman, 1996b:11).

Free download from

This problem is clearly illustrated by our case study of the KwaZulu-Natal Programme for Survivors of Violence. In attempting to meet the psychological needs of individual victims of violence, programme staff were confronted by the reality that these individuals had to return to communities that were themselves traumatised and disrupted by violence. The problems of individual victims of violence could therefore not be addressed without also addressing the problems of the communities. Similar conditions apply to families and schools. For example, the American evidence shows that crime prevention programmes work best for families in the strongest communities, and that criminal justice programmes are least effective in communities where family violence is most prevalent. Similarly, it was found that schools situated in crime-ridden, disorganised communities were more likely to fail because they lacked the infrastructure necessary to support prevention programmes. Again, the case study of the KwaZulu-Natal Programme for Survivors of Violence shows that similar trends may exist in South Africa or at least in KwaZulu-Natal. This programme experienced major difficulties in implementing interventions in schools because of the weak position of teachers, their lack of support and trust from parents and educational authorities, and the involvement of many schools in violence in the past. This inter-linking of problems in impoverished and violence-ridden communities of course places major obstacles in the way of developing effective interventions for such communities. The sheer magnitude of the problems in such communities is a major discouragement to agencies charged with bringing about change, Yet, there are also indications that the strategies utilised to address problems in poor communities have not always been adequate. For example, the NIJ report argues that while the causes or risk factors of serious crime are basic and interconnected, community programmes that have tried to address crime are generally superficial and piecemeal. Furthermore, the ideology of empowerment and community-driven development has often resulted in programmes and interventions that make unrealistic demands on the already depleted resources of poor communities: Ironically, a central tenet of community prevention programs has been the empowerment of local community leaders to design and implement their own crime prevention strategies. This philosophy may amount to throwing people overboard and then letting them design their own life preserver. The scientific literature shows that the policies and market forces causing criminogenic community structures and cultures are beyond the control of neighbourhood residents, and that "empowerment" does not include the power to change those policies (Sherman, 1996c:2). As pointed out earlier, there is consistent evidence that neighbourhood watch programmes, for example, are least likely to succeed in poor neighbourhoods where crime is most rampant and where risk factors for crime and violence proliferate. The findings of the community studies in Meyerspark, Slovo Park, Mandela Square and Midrand suggest that similar conditions apply in at least some South African communities.


Free download from

In general the evidence from America and other parts of the world indicates that community-based crime prevention strategies have not succeeded in reducing crime. In particular, the evidence shows that community mobilisation alone "is ineffective against serious crime in low-income communities" (Sherman, 1996c: 25). Hope (1995) distinguishes between "vertical" and "horizontal" strategies of crime prevention. In the latter, crime prevention is focused on community members solving their own problems, while "vertical" solutions focus on the linkages between community life and decisions made at higher levels of power outside the community. Examples of such "vertical" strategies include street closing, improving street lighting, greater police attention to crime "hot spots", and possibly community policing forums. The NIJ report reaches the following conclusion: It may be that mobilisation alone cannot bear down directly on crime, and that the "horizontal" theory of community crime prevention is not likely to succeed. Further experimentation with different "vertical" tactics may be needed to find out if community mobilisation or other methods to affect decisions external to the local community can change such decisions in ways that cause local crime prevention (Sherman, 1996c:8). Before extending the argument that effective crime prevention in South Africa requires comprehensive and innovative interventions in our poorest communities, it is useful to consider some of the recent international findings relating to crime prevention in other institutional settings, particularly in families and schools. (a)

Family-based crime prevention

As the NIJ report on crime prevention in America points out, "perhaps the mast basic structural feature of any community is the condition of its families. Basic family practices in child-rearing, marriage, and parental employment appear to matter enormously in the criminality of both children and fathers" (Sherman, 1996b:8). This conclusion is partly based on hard data which show that while serious crime in the United States is ' geographically concentrated in a small number of high-crime communities, it is individually concentrated in families with anti-social parents, rejecting parents, parents in conflict, parents imposing inconsistent punishment, and parents who supervise their children loosely. Several analysts conclude that these risk factors are cumulative, and that the more of them a prevention program can address the better” (Sherman,1996f;2). The accumulated evidence also shows that the earlier family risk factors are addressed, the better, and that programmes for infants and young children may be most cost-effective in the long run, even if they are expensive in the short term. Family problems are more difficult to address later in life, especially family violence by adults. The need for early intervention is also supported by South African data, as the case study of the Medical Research Council`s National Trauma Research Programme has shown. It is also consistent with the interventions and (unfortunately limited) evaluation research undertaken by the Parent Centre in Cape Town (see case studies). While conclusive research findings on the effectiveness of early family interventions are not available in South Africa, there is considerable consensus among international scientists on what does work in family-based crime prevention. "Most of these conclusions have been reached independently by diverse scholars from diverse disciplines. ... Given the normal disagreements among social scientists, the level of


consensus about these conclusions is striking" (Sherman,1996f:1). In particular, consensus is strong on the effectiveness of home visitation programmes similar to the programme of the Parent Centre case study: Perhaps the most promising results in all areas of crime prevention are found in the evaluations of home visitation programs. While these programs are often combined with other institutional elements, such as pre-school, there is a large and almost uniformly positive body of findings on this practice (Sherman,1996f:2.)

Free download from

Much of what is known about family-based crime prevention comes from evaluations established for other purposes, especially for human development programmes. "As programmes intended to improve parents' child-rearing skills, children's academic skills, or children's mental health, they have often resulted - almost coincidentally in reduced crime" (Sherman, 1996f:2). Another major issue relating to family-based crime prevention is domestic violence. Because domestic violence tends to be localised within specific families, it poses less of a threat to the public in general, and therefore has attracted less public concern than other, more random forms of violence. However, public complacency about domestic violence is misplaced, in that scientific evidence shows that domestic violence can breed violence that focuses on the community. "Being abused or neglected as a child increases a person’s risk for arrest as a juvenile by 53 percent, as an adult by 38 percent, and for violent crime by 38 percent. In addition abuse at an early age increases the risk of revictimisation” (Widom, cited by Witwer & Crawford, 1995:6). (b)

School based crime prevention

Schools are the most direct link between families and communities, and have great potential for crime prevention. Schools provide the most regular access to children 6

and the youth throughout their developmental years The schooling system also exists to help the youth develop as healthy and productive citizens, with teachers being paid to perform this task. Communities and parents usually also support schools in socialising the young. Furthermore, by teaching children to read, write and compute, schools may be performing the most important crime prevention practice, in that this provides the means for integration in the workplace and community (Gottfredson, 1996:I). However, as the NIJ report points out, in the United States "too many schools are overwhelmed by a criminogenic community context, crippled by the lack of parental support for learning and the breakdown of order in the classrooms" (Sherman, 1996b:8). It is precisely those schools whose populations are most in need of prevention and intervention services that are least able to provide those services. Although schools cannot be expected to reverse their communities' problems, they can influence their own rates of disorder (Gottfredson, 1996:1). Recent developments in South African educational policy, in particular Education Minister Kader Asmal’s recent "Call to action” strategy and Nine Priorities for Education and Training, lay a basis for strengthening the linkages between schools and communities and making schools the centres of community life: The school will truly become a centre of community and cultural life if its facilities are being put to use for youth and adult learning, community meetings, music and 205

drama, sports and recreation. ... There is a role in a community school for religious bodies, businesses, cultural groups, sports clubs and civic associations, both to serve their own requirements and to contribute to the school's learning programme both in and out of school hours." (Asmal, 1999:9) The Minister's vision includes not only the integration of school and community, but also the location of the school within a safe, stable and peaceful environment, and the regeneration of norms and values that would be supportive of learning and selfdiscipline. In order to address the problems of crime, vandalism, drug dealing, rape and sexual abuse, schools need to forge links with other community organisations and institutions, including the policing forums.

Free download from

Crime, violence and political transition With the exception of the discussion of social disintegration in South Africa, this chapter has so far focused on international findings on crime and crime prevention. It is necessary to ask ourselves therefore whether there are not unique features to the growth of crime and violence in South Africa and to what extent this might influence the relevance of international findings for our country. In particular, there is a need to locate the growth of crime in South Africa within its historical context. Shaw (1995a; 1995b; 1997) has argued that there is a clear link between South Africa's transition to democracy and the growth in crime. Increases in crime marked the political transitions in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, as well as in Namibia just before and after independence. Shaw concedes, however, that it would be "dangerously simplistic" to see the growth in crime as purely a consequence of this transition. Although increases in crime in South Africa from 1990 may be seen as similar to the experiences of other countries in the process of transition, crime statistics show that levels of crime have always been high and that serious crime began increasing from the mid-1980s. Rather, as Shaw (1997:I) himself states, there is strong evidence to suggest that the roots of crime "lie in the apartheid system". Indeed crime statistics suggest that there was continuity in the causes of crime and that social processes that began in the apartheid era were accelerated by the transition. The evidence suggests that crime rates were high in the black townships before the political transition, but that whites were largely insulated from their effects by racial segregation. With the weakening and final collapse of apartheid, crime was allowed to move out of the townships and into the affluent white suburbs. The breakdown of formal, and especially informal, social control was evident before the transition, but was given added impetus by the restructuring of the state. "The bonds holding the society together are loosened in periods of instability, making crime more likely" (Shaw, 1995:20), Shaw's account is therefore not inconsistent with Ramphele's analysis of causes of social disintegration in South Africa. While Shaw’s interpretation is consistent with trends on both the national and international level, it leaves a number of questions unanswered. Firstly, it does not provide a full explanation for why crime rates were high before the transition. While he does link the high pre-transition crime rates to the system of apartheid, the dynamics of this relationship are not clear from his account. The closest Shaw (1995a:22) gets to explaining the dynamics of this relationship is his reference to "tentative theories" which "suggest that crime rates may be related to the effect on


Free download from

black family structure of apartheid laws and conditions they argue that influx control and other pressures which fragment black family life weakened parental control over children, prompting criminal behaviour. These theories are untested but if they contain some truth, the effects are unlikely to be reversed quickly." Given the high crime rates before the transition, questions arise as to whether there was any continuity in the conditions that fostered crime in the transitional period and those conditions that existed prior to the transition. In particular, the increase in serious crime from the mid-1980s is suggestive of continuity with crime trends in the 1990s. The dramatic decline in certain crimes such as robbery, housebreaking and assault during the mid- to late 1980s also raises questions to which Shaw has attempted to provide answers. For example, he (Shaw, 1995b) suggests that during momentous social and political events such as wars, political struggles and elections, criminals might be otherwise occupied, or the police may be less efficient in recording crimes. However, if the police were less efficient in recording crimes during such events, one would also expect them to be less efficient at preventing crime. Indeed Shaw (1995b & 1997) has also argued that during periods of instability, crime might increase because policing activities are diverted to controlling political violence and unrest. More convincing is his argument that heightened national awareness, greater concentration of political struggle and tighter community structures may prevent people from committing crimes. It has often been observed that greater social solidarity is encouraged during periods of war or external threat (Pease,1983, cited by Shaw,1995a), and politicians have often been adept at using the threat of war or foreign military adventures to galvanise national unity and support. For example, crime was shown to decrease in Britain during the Falklands War, as it has during important sporting events. Similarly, it has been shown that in spite of, or maybe because of, intense political conflict in Northern Ireland, the Northern Irish are less likely to be victims of crime than Americans or West Europeans. These trends are perhaps mirrored by crime statistics in South Africa. During the late 1980s, when the political struggle in South Africa intensified, there appeared to be a decrease in some crimes. Crime also dropped dramatically during the 1994 elections in South Africa. Shaw (1995a:20-22) offers two related hypotheses for the changes in crime brought about by the transition. The first of these "suggests that community bonds forged in response to state aggression held crime in check. More specifically, local resistance groups often launched anti-crime campaigns in the townships as their influence grew. The post-1990 negotiation period broke these linkages: not only did state repression weaken, but transition brought infra-community conflict." Political violence also left a legacy in that it weakened social control, "producing marginalised groups reliant on the conflict for a livelihood. The result has been to increase levels of crime as disaffected individuals (primarily township youth) become engaged in it. Secondly, Shaw suggests that South Africa’s reintegration into the world economy at a time of political transition may have created greater opportunities for the growth of organised crime and in particular drug trafficking, "as loopholes open and legal systems of regulation adapt to changing circumstances". For example, "political instability, lawlessness, unemployment, insufficient border control ... render [the African continent] an attractive manufacturing base and transit route for drug traffickers (CAICI, 1995 cited by Shaw, 1995a; 21). In particular, the availability of sophisticated firearms following colonial and post-colonial wars and conflicts in southern Africa has probably played an important role in the escalation of violent crimes. 207

Crime, development and social capital

Free download from

It is becoming increasingly common to see a strong relationship between crime and development. For example, the UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (1995) stated that "freedom from crime, safety from violence at home and on the street, public safety and the means to make cities safer are essential ingredients of sustainable development" (Millner,1997:4). Although crime is increasing in almost all countries of the world, the cost of crime is disproportionately high for developing countries. The Nedcor Project on Crime, Violence and Investment, for example, estimated that crime cost South Africa R31 billion or 18% of the national budget for 1996/97 (Millner, 1997:3). A wide range of costs can be associated with crime. Besides the drain on financial resources caused by fighting crime, crime also disrupts economic activities, impacting, for example, on tourism, commuters and isolated farmers. It undermines investor confidence, discourages investment and aid, and is a major factor in the emigration of skilled and highly educated members of the work force. Development programmes themselves have been held up by crime. There is also a range of political costs, such as the creation of fear and insecurity, loss of confidence in governing structures (e.g. the police), vigilantism, strains on the criminal justice system, and violations of human rights. In addition, crime imposes private security costs on individuals and firms. However, crime is not only a cost and hindrance to development, but development has also been seen as a necessary precondition for addressing the problems of crime. For example, the 1993 Report of the Goldstone Commission concludes that "development has to be delivered to eliminate the socio-economic triggers of violence; but that delivery itself often triggers more violence". While there would appear to be some kind of relationship between crime and development, it is not altogether clear how this relationship functions, or what aspects of poverty may be related to crime. It is commonly suggested that high crime rates in South Africa are related to poverty and unemployment. Yet there are many countries that are poor in which rates of crime and interpersonal violence are relatively low. Research findings also do not support the belief that the unemployed are more likely to commit crime. As Shaw (1995:35) points out, the findings are contradictory. Some studies show an association between crime and unemployment, while others do not. Even if it was possible to show that crime rises during periods of high unemployment, this does not necessarily mean that the unemployed are responsible for the increased crime rate. This chapter has consistently highlighted the linkages between crime and development, although the emphasis has been more on the social than the economic aspects of development. It has argued that the risk factors of crime are tightly intertwined with the disintegration of the social fabric in poor communities, with family breakdowns and the erosion of communities, informal social controls and authority. Social disintegration and social capital The relationship between crime, development and social disintegration can perhaps best be understood in relation to the concept of social capital. In the first chapter social capital was defined as those "features of social life - networks, norms, and trust - that enable participants to act together more effectively to pursue shared 208


Free download from

objectives" (Putnam,1995:664-665) . In other words, like physical capital, social capital represents resources that people can draw upon to solve common problems. Social capital also enhances the benefits of physical, financial and human capital. Poor and crime-ridden communities are usually not only poor in economic resources, but lack the social resources or social capital to address their problems. The process of Social disintegration identified by Ramphele can therefore be seen as the erosion of social capital. While Ramphele does not explicitly refer to social capital, the notion is implicit in a great deal of what she says. For example, in discussing the negative impact of some survival strategies utilised by black communities, she argues that "like all capital, the failure to service the resource base provided by survival strategies, has white-anted the very fabric of most black communities" (Ramphele, 1991:14). The concept of social capital also allows for a more systematic understanding of the processes and dynamics described by Ramphele. For example, a major implication of forced removals is that they destroyed social capital (i.e. social networks, norms and trash that had built up over many years. The following description by Don Pinnock (cited by Ramphele, 1991:10) of the consequences of the District Six removals, vividly illustrates this point: .., like a man with a stick breaking spider webs in a forest. The spider may survive the fall, but he can't survive without his web. When he comes to build it again he finds the anchors gone, the people are all over, and the fabric of generations lost. Similarly, the breakdown of families by the migrant labour system, the flight of positive role models from the townships, and the erosion of the authority of parents and teachers, all represent significant losses of social capital. With their depleted stocks of social capital communities and families are no longer able to exercise informal social controls over community members and children, to reinforce and give substance to the formal sanctions of the criminal justice system. In this social vacuum, criminal and youth gangs, vigilantes, comrades and warlords are free to build up private stocks of social capital and impose their own controls, norms and 8

interests on communities,

Inequality, social cohesion and violence As Wilkinson (1999a:1) points out in a recent article, there is now "substantial evidence" showing that when income differences are greater, people are less likely to trust one another, and rates of violence are likely to be higher. Not only has it been shown that inequality and social cohesion are related to violent crime, but also that inequality and low stocks of social capital have a major impact on the health of the population as a whole (KAWACHI et al.1999; Wilkinson,1999a & b). The accumulating evidence suggests that as inequalities increase, the quality of social relations deteriorates, violence increases and the population's health suffers. A study by Kennedy et al, (1998), for example, provides powerful evidence of the relationship between social capital and violent crime in the United States, In their national study the Harvard research team found high correlations between violent crime on the one hand and Social capital and income inequality on the other. The relationships between these variables held even after controlling for poverty and a measure for access to firearms. Their results suggest that it is not so much poverty (as absolute deprivation) that accounts for crime, but rather income inequality as a


measure of relative deprivation. Income inequality is strongly associated with a decline in social trust, social disorganisation and low social cohesion. This suggests that "income inequality is powerfully related to the incidence of homicide and violent crimes via the depletion of social capital" (Kennedy et al,, 1998:15).

Free download from

Although it is as yet unclear exactly why social capital should play such an important role in determining levels of violence and health in society, a number of explanations have been offered, Kennedy et al, (1998:8), for example, hypothesise that communities which lack social capital are less effective in exerting informal social control over their members "through establishing and maintaining norms to reduce violence". Wilkinson (1999a & b), on the other hand, argues that the beneficial effects of social cohesion "may be less of a reflection of its direct effects, than of its role as a marker for the underlying psychological pain of low status". Emile Durkheim investigated the relationship between social disintegration and social well being in his study of suicide more than a hundred years ago. Durkheim was interested in suicide because he saw it as falling in the same category as economic conflict, crime and divorce, and was indicative of the "pathological state" of European society of the time (Nisbet, 1965:45). In his classic study, Durkheim declares that suicide "varies inversely with the degree of integration of the social group of which the individual forms a part" (Nisbet, 1965:46). When society is strongly integrated, individuals are restrained from taking their lives. Conversely, when Social ties are weakened, suicide increases, particularly among those groups that are marginalised. It is also of interest that Durkheim saw poverty as a restraint on suicide rather than a cause. Social capital is not only relevant to crime and health, but provides a necessary basis for development. Various studies have demonstrated that strong civic community (social capital), represented by strong and effective social relationships and networks, is not only a key to good governance, but also to sustained socio-economic development. As one of the foremost proponents of social capital, Robert Putnam (1993) argues that social capital is a vital ingredient in economic development. It operates through various means, including the creation of norms of reciprocity and trust, which allow for more efficient social interaction. It facilitates co-operation, coordination and communication to attain collective goals, and reduces incentives for opportunism and malfeasance. Furthermore, as James Coleman (1988) has demonstrated, it plays a vital role in creating human capital. If these arguments are accepted, and there appear to be relatively strong grounds for doing so, then it should be a major and urgent priority to address the issue of social capital in South Africa, especially in our poor communities. As we have tried to show, not only is social capital a vital factor in our high crime rates, but it is also a prerequisite for successful and sustainable development. Bonds and bridges Although there has been a tendency, particularly in the early literature, to assume that all social capital is good for development and, by implication, good for the poor, social capital can also have a negative side (Woolcock, 1997; Portes & Landolt, 1997; Narayan, 1999;). While social capital can foster greater cohesion in society, it can also lead to power differentials and exclusion. As Narayan (1999:5) puts it, "the same ties that bind also exclude. The non-overlapping nature of social networks of different social groups results in unequal opportunity to participate. Hence those who belong to social networks which already have access to the resource allocation 210

decisions of the state or the private sector (jobs, location of industry) are much more likely to continue to be included in societal processes than those who do not have 9

Free download from

such access,” While horizontal ties may be useful in providing communities with a sense of identity and common purpose, they can become a basis for the pursuit of narrow interests. This can have the effect of isolating poor and socially marginalised communities from access to information and material resources which would otherwise be of great assistance to them (e.g. tips about job vacancies, access to credit, etc,). Recognition of the downside of social capital has been useful in helping to generate distinctions between different types of social capital and the potential impacts that each might have on the public good. Woolcock (1997), for example, has advanced the debate by distinguishing between infra-community networks and extracommunity networks, and their implications for development. Narayan (1999:12) has developed this further by arguing that "for societal well-being or the collective good, a transition has to occur from exclusive loyalty to primary social groups to networks of secondary associations whose most important characteristic is that they bring together people who in some ways are different from the self." He therefore places considerable emphasis on cross-cuffing ties (or bridging social capital) between different social groups which "open up economic opportunities to those belonging to less powerful or excluded groups" (Narayan, 1999:1-2). The importance of crosscutting ties is that they "lead to the collective good of citizens, whereas networks and associations consisting of primary social groups without cross-cutting ties lead to the betterment of only those groups” (Narayan, 1999:13). Cross-cutting ties are particularly important to economic opportunity and social cohesion when power between groups is asymmetrically distributed, as in South Africa: While primary groups and networks undoubtedly provide opportunities to those who belong, they also reinforce pre-existing social stratification, prevent mobility of excluded groups, minorities or poor people, and become the bases of corruption and co-option of power by dominant groups (Narayan, 1999:13). Narayan's distinction between primary social ties and cross-cutting ties bears much in common with Putnam's distinction between "bonding capital" and "bridging capital", and with Granovetter's notion of "the strength of weak ties". As part of his study of labour markets, Granovetter (1973) found that job seekers were most likely to have first heard of jobs they eventually secured through contacts or people they 10

did not know well (i.e. weak ties ). Such observations led him to conclude that "whatever is being diffused can reach a larger number of people and transverse greater social distance when passed through weak ties rather than strong [ties] ... weak ties are [therefore] an important resource in making possible mobility opportunity" (Granovetter,1973:1366 & 1373). Although primary ties may reinforce inequalities under certain circumstances, this does not mean that "strong ties" should be rejected in favour of "weak ties". As Edwards (1999:7-8) has argued: Throughout history, strong primary associations have been essential to social progress - think of the civil rights movement or the value of strong women's groups in the fight against discrimination. Notions of the "common interest" seem somewhat fanciful in deeply-divided societies ... Clearly, at some stage of their struggle, people do need to make political alliances with other groups who can push change through; just as primary ties must extend into networks that can mediate the increasing range of social contacts people need 211

Free download from

to be successful, outside the clan tribe or village. As economies evolve, the demands of economic exchange grow more complex, and traditional social networks find it increasingly difficult to cope. ... However, the goal is not to dissolve traditional bonds completely, but to find a better way of balancing the advantages they bring with the benefits of bridging for both markets as for civic groups and networks. In Chapter 9 the discussion of Pagad and Mapogo-a-Mathamanga focused on the ways in which both of these organisations were able to transcend the limitations of the specific communities from which they arose by drawing on social networks and relationships beyond the community. On the other hand, both organisations maintained "strong ties" with the communities in addition to accessing resources from extra-community sources. While Pagad mobilised residents of the Cape Flats communities for its marches and protests against gangs and drug dealers, it also mobilised support by drawing on Muslim networks, identities and loyalties that transcended the Cape Flats communities. Although little is known about the precise mechanisms used by Pagad to access the considerable political and economic resources of the Muslim community in South Africa, this could provide the basis for a fascinating study. Similarly, Mapogo has made use of business interests, relationships and networks to create a vigilante network in the Northern Province and Mpumalanga. However, the organisation retained strong ties with the communities, which allowed it to access "inside" information on criminal activities originating from these communities, as well as allowing it to impress on communities the consequences of involvement in criminal activities. While there are strong grounds for rejecting both the methods and goals of Pagad and Mapogo, the fact remains that these two organisations have demonstrated considerable effectiveness in mobilising communities and external support, particularly when compared to conventional community-based organisations. At least in part, this effectiveness may be attributed to the use of both intro- and extra-community networks and resources. Even if we reject the goals and methods of vigilante organisations, we might still be able to learn from their organisational principles. A further dimension of the two organisations, but particularly of Mapogo, is that they appear to be more successful than either the criminal justice system or more conventional community-based organisations in incorporating community discourses on crime into their activities. Because crime is often an integral part of poor communities and victims and perpetrators often known to one another, residents of poor communities often have alternative views of crime and crime prevention. For example, they are less likely to place emphasis on punishment and law and order than on issues such as restitution and the rehabilitation and reintegration of offenders into the community. Because vigilante organisations such as Mapogo and Pagad have developed organically out of the communities they serve (rather than being introduced by external agencies), they are probably better placed to develop programmes of action that take community discourses into account. The strategy of combining intro- and extra-community resources bears some resemblence to the "vertical" approach to community-based development advocated by Hope (1995) and to certain strands of the social capital debate that have explored the relationship between community structures and the state. While the conventional ("horizontal") approach to community-based development places the emphasis on community members solving their own problems with largely their own resources, the "vertical" approach focuses on connecting communities to sources of power and resources in the wider society, Similarly, development theorists are increasingly 212

Free download from

turning their attention to the potential synergies in relationships between state and civil society. For example, in a review of a series of articles on social capital and government action, Evans (1996:1130) concludes that "creative action by government organisations can foster social capital", as well as enhancing the efficacy of government. Among the strategies reviewed by Evans is "scaling up" of existing social capital to create organisations that are sufficiently encompassing to pursue development goals effectively. Evans is also not daunted by the lack of social capital in developing communities: "Pre-existing endowments of social capital are valuable resources in the construction of synergistic relations, but they do not appear to be the decisive scarcity." The concept of social capital can be applied not only to communities but also to law enforcement agencies. Internationally there is a growing body of research suggesting that the style adopted by police in their relations with communities can prevent or encourage crime. Scientific evidence shows that the "police can themselves create a risk factor for crime simply by using bad manners"; that the less respectful police are towards suspects and citizens generally, the less people will comply with the law. For example, it was found that repeat domestic violence was lowest among arrestees who thought that the police had treated them respectfully. Similarly, a powerful effect on recidivism was associated with police taking the time to listen to the offender's side of the stony (Sherman, 1997d:1 & 22). In the terminology of social capital, the police can be seen as building up social capital with the community by being respectful, and of eroding their social capital when they use bad manners. The relevance of these findings is obvious for South Africa where the legitimacy of the police has been severely eroded by their identification with the enforcement of apartheid polices and their use of brutal and unlawful methods.

Multisectoral intervention An issue that is related to building social capital between communities and external agencies such as the state, concerns the relationships that exist between external agencies involved in crime prevention. In order to ensure the effectiveness of crime prevention, external agencies have to co-operate with one another and co-ordinate their activities. In this they face similar difficulties to those of communities whose members need to co-operate with one another, just as external agencies such as the state need to ensure the co-operation of communities and civil society. The public health model places considerable emphasis on mufti-sectoral collaboration in combating crime, violence and injury. The need for comprehensive and multisectoral interventions also received attention in the case studies. As stated in the first chapter of this book, the NCPS also emphasised intersectoral collaboration. Six departments - Police, Justice, Correctional Services, Welfare, National Intelligence Services and the Defence Force - were represented by their respective ministers and directors-general on the main NCPS committee. In addition, a number of other departments such as Transport, Home Affairs, Finance and the South African Revenue Services were also involved, although to a lesser degree than the six core departments. An incentive system to encourage intersectoral collaboration had also been established under the auspices of the RDP and Vice-President's Office by providing funding for intersectoral projects. As Steven Friedman (1998), director of the Centre for Policy Studies, pointed out in a recent policy brief, co-ordination between government departments "is not natural, they have their own programmes and budgetary interests, and will not easily 213

abandon them in the interests of a common goal." He also argues that co-ordination is unlikely to be achieved simply by demanding it or setting up structures, and that the RDP office was phased out because the government was unable to achieve co11

ordination by simply establishing an institution that mandated it.

Free download from

Co-ordination can also be extremely time-consuming (and therefore expensive), particularly when the parties involved do not share common goals and visions, and where the ground rules of co-ordination have not been clearly laid out. Negotiating a co-ordinated approach, roles, functions and jurisdictions can be an extremely complex and difficult task, particularly where departmental priorities clash or specific interests are threatened. With most government departments under pressure to deliver, the time and effort demanded by co-ordination may therefore exceed the rewards that each party may gain from it. A related difficulty is that co-ordination between government departments usually needs to take place at several levels. Officials lower down in the hierarchy usually do not have the authority to implement co-ordinated initiatives, even if they are able to see the benefits of such co-ordination. Similarly, co-ordination at high levels such as the cabinet, for example, will not automatically secure a common vision and commitment to co-ordination from officials at lower levels who are responsible for implementing co-ordinated initiatives. It is also difficult for those operating at the top of a hierarchy to understand or foresee all the practical difficulties and conflicts that can arise during implementation. In a sense, therefore, intergovernmental coordination can be a source of problems as well as a solution. While high-level political commitment to intersectoral co-ordination may provide a strong incentive for co-ordination at lower levels, as Friedman (1998:3) points out, this is not always enough: ... lines of authority do not always stretch down to the operational level. Coordination is therefore likely to be achieved only if public service rules and budgets reward co-operation. Often they do not; any policy which relies on co-operation is therefore obliged to give attention to the incentives for and disincentives to it 12

within the system.

In a more detailed treatment of the problems relating to intergovernmental relations, Gotz and White (1997) argue that intergovernmental co-ordination is "unlikely to be realized unless policy makers begin to think through much of the mythology that surrounds the IGR concept." They argue that it is crucial to focus on the ultimate desired outcomes of policy processes, and then to choose the most appropriate means for achieving these outcomes. The development of strategies, particularly at the operational level, should therefore precede the establishment of structures and systems of co-ordination: In a highly bureaucratic institution such as the public service, this is not always possible, but creative ways should be sought to find an appropriate fit between a plan and the execution of it. Effective co-ordination requires skills and commitment, both of which may not be readily apparent in all sectors of government (Gotz & White, 1997:61-62). It may be that the whole emphasis on intersectoral or intergovernmental coordination is misplaced. Co-ordination is the means of achieving goals and not the goal itself. This suggests that instead of regarding intersectoral collaboration and intergovernmental relations as the central goal, policies and programmes should rather strive for the comprehensiveness and effectiveness of policies and 214

Free download from

interventions. As the NIJ report argues, mufti-agency co-ordination is no guarantee that problems will be effectively addressed. "To be comprehensive in addressing risk factors is very different from being comprehensive in mobilising all available agencies of government. Recent comprehensive crime prevention programs merit the term more by agency participation than by risk factors" (Sherman,1996c:2). An integral part of this problem is that many risk factors do not have any obvious agency to address them, and quite often even those agencies with a clear mandate to address a specific problem area, do not have the resources to do so effectively and comprehensively. Effective and comprehensive responses to problems such as crime and violence do not always require high-level co-ordination between sectors. The problem of domestic violence provides a good example. It has often been observed that health practitioners have greater contact with victims of domestic violence than do the police and courts, and that medical staff are often better placed than police officers to obtain the co-operation of victims. This suggests that health personnel, together with the police, courts and welfare services, can play a crucial role in the identification, intervention in and prevention of family violence (Witwer & Crawford, 1995). Addressing the issue of domestic violence, however, does not necessarily entail high-level co-ordination between health, justice, welfare and police sectors. Instead the problem may be addressed by training hospital and clinic staff to identify victims and provide appropriate support and by establishing effective referral procedures to other sectors. In other words, the problem can be addressed within a specific department or sector without infringing on the authority and vested interests of other departments or sectors. Edward Jennings (cited by Gotz and White,1997:45-46) has summed this situation up well: The crux of the problem, then, is that co-ordination, the linking together of resources and processes to achieve desired outcomes, cannot be attained through the command and control techniques of hierarchical management. Instead, bridges must be built between programmes and across organisations that can contribute to a common purpose. In building such bridges, it is crucial to move away from the conception that co-ordination occurs only when there is central direction. It also can be a product of interaction, bargaining and negotiation among autonomous organisations. The issues raised by Jennings again point to the relevance of social capital, even in the context of co-ordination of government activities. In particular, the idea of building bridges between programmes and across organisations is reminiscent of the language of social capital, because the building of bridges between social agents is an important function of social capital. A major focus of the next section therefore is on strategies and interventions that involve the building of bridges between social agents involved in crime prevention, be this on the level of communities, the state or between the two.

Building social capital While we have long been aware of the problems of social disintegration and of how public policy can destroy social capital, we have been less successful in identifying ways to counter social disintegration or to build social capital. Even Ramphele (1991), who provides a comprehensive analysis of the dynamics and causes of social disintegration, offers very little in the way of strategies to address the problem. In part, this failure may be due to the relatively recent development of the concept of social capital, and in part to the daunting nature of the task of addressing issues like 215

social disintegration. Some theorists and policy makers would argue that the disintegration of communities and families is both inevitable and irreversible, and that other means have to be found to address the gap. This position is challenged by the NIJ report: Whether police, courts and prisons can fill the gap left by weak families and socially marginal communities is a question subject to debate in both politics and social science. But it may be the wrong question to ask, at least initially. The premise of the question is that the breakdown of the basic institutions of crime prevention is inevitable. Yet for over a century, a wide range of programs has attempted to challenge that premise. Entirely new institutions, from public schools to social work to the police themselves ... have been invented to provide structural support to families and communities. ... Rather than simply assuming their failure,

Free download from

it seems wiser to start by taking stock of their efforts. (Sherman, 1996b:6)


Clearly more concerted and innovative thinking will have to be applied to the problem of social capital, particularly in South Africa where the size of the problem is overwhelming and research into social capital is no more than a few years old. More systematic research on social disintegration and social capital is not only needed to address effective crime prevention, but also as a basis for social and economic development. There are, however, several pointers that emerge from our case studies and from the wider literature that suggest ways in which the problems of social disintegration and social capital may be approached: •

For example, the Survivors of Violence case study offers some insights on how the individually oriented strategies of clinical psychology can be applied to Social disintegration. A unique feature of the Survivors Programme is that it has broadened the concept of psychological integrity to include the integrity of small groups, communities and society as a whole. Various strategies have been developed in the programme to address problems of fragmentation and disintegration at different levels of society. For example, strategies have been developed to build social relationships between individuals, groups and communities, to build trust and caring behaviour, and to rebuild fragmented social structures. Unfortunately, no systematic or outcome evaluation has yet been performed on the programme, so it is not possible to assess how effective these strategies have been.

Secondly, evidence (some of which is reviewed in this chapter) appears to be accumulating that community-based approaches that throw communities back onto their own resources are doomed to failure in highly impoverished and socially fragmented communities. While most of the evidence emanating from evaluations of community-based crime prevention projects is from studies outside South Africa, the local case studies indicate that similar conditions may apply here, as elsewhere. The case study of the Centre for Peace Action (CPA) Programme, for example, illustrates the major difficulties that programme workers experience in mobilising community members for crime and injury prevention. The case studies of Eldorado Park and Meyerspark communities also lend credence to the difficulties in mobilising poor communities to fight crime.

In Chapter 9 we distinguished between "horizontal" and "vertical" approaches to community mobilisation. While the "horizontal" approach emphasises community members solving their own problems, the vertical approach focuses on the linkages between community life and decisions made at higher levels of power (outside the community).In South Africa both research and practice have focused 216

largely on horizontal approaches to community-based development, with very 14

little attention devoted to "vertical" strategies. This probably relates to the gap between communities and government under apartheid, as well as to the populist emphasis on community participation and community empowerment that immediately followed the election of a democratic government. There is therefore a clear need for innovative thinking and focused evaluations of "vertical" strategies of community mobilisation in South Africa.

Free download from

There is a need to consider and evaluate some of the new approaches in the field of community-based development. One of these is the asset-based approach for building communities "from the inside out" of McKnight and Kretzmann of NorthWestern University in the United States. McKnight and Kretzmann have developed an asset-based approach (as opposed to a needs-driven approach to community development that essentially involves identifying, regenerating and utilising Social and human capital within communities. They have achieved considerable successes in applying their approach to impoverished and Socially devastated communities in the United States. The assumption underlying the asset-based approach is that although poor communities may lack social resources and power, these resources are not completely lacking. A great deal more can be attained by effectively mobilising existing social resources than by focusing on the overwhelming needs of poor and socially devastated communities.

While the development of strategies to counter the effects of social disintegration and build social capital is still in its infancy, a number of promising approaches and interventions are beginning to emerge from the social capital debate. These include both micro- and macro-level interventions. Micro-level interventions Although the development of strategies and interventions to build social capital is a relatively new endeavour, there is a wealth of experience within community development practice that has major relevance for the social capital perspective. While these community development practices were not necessarily conceived within a social capital perspective, they addressed issues that have considerable relevance to this perspective. One example is the asset-based approach that has developed strategies for mobilising the human capital and social capital resources of poor communities. Others such as the Local initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) demonstration which has been active in various areas of the United States since 1979, have tried to enhance social capital within low-income communities and fostered bridges between residents of low income communities and the larger metropolitan area support community (Gittel & Vidal, 1998). Community development strategies that have been applied in poor communities in the US and which have relevance for building social capital, include the following: •

The establishment of development structures that cross racial, ethnic, and class lines.

Efforts to bring together residents with business owners and managers of local non profit organisations such as hospitals and social service agencies.

Providing links to outside resources and opportunities that motivate and sustain the community development activity. 217

From a social capital perspective, Narayan (1999:2) has summed up the main requirements for building social capital in poor communities: "First, it is vital to invest in the organisational capacity of the poor. This requires investment at the micro level, and also changes in rules and laws at the macro level, in order to support associational activity. A second critical area of investment is in fostering cross-cutting ties (or bridging social capital) among groups.”

Free download from

The asset-based approach An approach to community development that has focused on strengthening the organisational capacity of the poor as well as fostering cross-cutting ties is the assetbased approach of Kretzmann & McKnight (1993). Essentially Kretzmann & McKnight have developed a methodology for mapping the resources of poor communises. This not only involves making an inventory of the knowledge, skills and talents (i.e, the human capital) of individuals and households, but also of mapping the associations, networks and institutions (i.e. the social capital) that exist in the community. Having mapped these resources and made community members aware of them, the next step involves building co-operative relations between individuals, associations and institutions in order to mobilise these resources for building or developing the community. Asset maps may be used in various ways to foster development. For example, persons with complementary skills can be brought together to start new enterprises, linkages can be established between skills in the community and local employers, skills may also be mobilised for teaching other community members or for contributing to and strengthening community organisations. In addition, the methodology makes provision for identifying, activating and linking local associations, including formal institutions such as businesses and state agencies, in the service of development. Although the asset-based approach was developed outside of the social capital discourse and uses different terminology, its essential concerns are very similar to 15

those of the social capital debate. Its major strategies are focused on the identification and mobilisation of social and human capital resources in communities and involve an understanding of the dynamics of socio-economic development that mirrors the understanding that has developed within the social capital debate. Not only does it advocate strengthening the institutional capacities of poor communities through the linking of horizontal associations, but it also promotes the development of linkages between local associations and more formal institutions outside of the community (cross-cutting ties or "bridging" social capital). Although the methodology developed for the asset based approach also places considerable emphasis on human capital, its approach to human capital is to link persons with complementary skills into co-operative enterprises. In other words, it approaches human capital from a social capital perspective, using social capital strategies to mobilise under-utilised human capital. In fact, the underlying concern of the asset-based approach is in building community from the inside out, an emphasis that fits well with concerns relating to increasing stocks of social capital in poor communities. A further characteristic of the asset-based approach is the radical distinction it draws between needs-based approaches and asset-based approaches to development. The dominant approach to development both in South Africa and other parts of the world has been needs-driven. This approach starts out by focusing on the needs, deficiencies and problems of poor communities, and devises strategies to address these needs and problems. In fact the most common approach to initiating development projects is to start out with a needs assessment. Kretzmann & McKnight (1983) maintain that the needs-based approach creates mental maps of communities 218

Free download from

that encouraged its members to think about themselves as fundamentally deficient and as powerless victims of their circumstances. This is because: •

The needs-based approach focuses on the problems and deficiencies of communities rather than their strengths, and thus creates a negative image of the community. These deficiency images are often internalised by local residents who look increasingly to the state and other external agencies to solve their problems for them.

As the needs and deficiencies of poor communities are often overwhelming, the needs-based approach serves to discourage and disempower communities rather than encourage and empower them.

community members and their leaders are encouraged by the needs-based approach to dwell upon, and even exaggerate, their needs and deficiencies because qualifying for aid often depends upon showing that one's needs and problems are greater than those of others.

Powerlessness and dependence in turn create attitudes of hopelessness and entitlement that act as a drain on the limited resources of service-delivery and development agencies.

The needs-based approach also tends to fragment efforts to find solutions to the interrelated problems of poor communities by sectorally specific interventions.

In conjunction with the focus on sectoral interventions and external services is the tendency to direct funds towards potential helpers rather than the communities themselves.

Finally, as research and research funding agencies are predominantly needs- and problem-oriented, our knowledge of poor communities is skewed towards their problems and weaknesses rather than their capacities and strengths.

While the image of deficiency created by the needs-based approach may represent part of the truth about these communities, it does not represent the whole truth. Kretzmann and McKnight (1993) argue that there is nothing natural or inevitable about this process of emphasising and servicing needs. The alternative, they maintain, is to focus on the capacities, skills and social resources of poor people and their communities. This is not to deny that poor communities have problems and deficiencies, but rather to start out from what the community has rather than from what it does not have. In spite of their needs and problems, all poor communities do have some resources, but these tend to be forgotten when the focus falls on their overwhelming needs and problems Furthermore, the focus on resources within the community does not necessarily ignore the external context of and constraints on poor communities, nor does it imply that these communities do not need additional resources from outside. Rather the "asset-based" approach argues that development requires as thorough an understanding of assets or resources, as it does of needs. It also suggests that outside resources can be more effectively utilized if the community has already mobilized its own resources and defined the agendas for the utilization of external resources.


Macro-level interventions Fox (1996a), for example, explores the relationship between social capital and local government and in particular the conditions that are necessary to overcome negative legacies of the past. His focus is therefore on macro factors, specifically the enabling environments for social capital accumulation. While acknowledging that it is difficult to encourage genuine participation where social capital is weak, he argues that it is possible for governments to create enabling environments that "lower the costs of collective action while increasing the payoffs." Firstly, governments need to reduce disincentives for participation by ensuring that the entire population has access to civil and political rights. This includes addressing the persistence of "authoritarian enclaves" in which members of under-represented or vulnerable groups, such as the poor, women, and ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities, feel discouraged to 16

Free download from

participate within otherwise democratic contexts.

Besides removing disincentives, governments can also create positive incentives for participation by encouraging both the reality and perception that citizen action can influence important government decisions. A necessary, but not sufficient precondition for informed participation is policy transparency at all levels of government. Citizens need to be able to hold officials accountable, and in order to do so require access to information. Informed participation may therefore be facilitated by "watchdog institutions in civil society" that can both interpret government policy and provide independent evaluations of government performance. Another example relates to the use of media campaigns. Tendler (1997) provides various examples of how the regional government of Ceara in Northeast Brazil was able to facilitate greater accountability among public servants and greater participation by citizens. These examples included public information campaigns, prizes for good performance, public screening methods for new recruits, orientation programmes, and boasting through the media about its successes. All of these contributed to boosting the sense of "calling" of public officials to their jobs, and helped to generate greater trust between officials and the public. Both the media and independent research institutions are important in this regard. However, horizontal exchanges of information are also important in finding common ground between developing communities and interests: Exchanges among different leaders from different neighborhoods or villages can also contribute to the process of overcoming barriers to the perception of shared problems. If local organizations are able to come together across territorial, ethnic and other boundaries, they can discover where they share potential allies and opponents elsewhere in the political system. This kind of horizontal exchange is especially important for articulating and defending interests of social, cultural and ethnic groups that may be under-represented in public life (Fox, 1998a). Such horizontal exchanges of information, Fox argues, can encourage scaling up, in that they provide a basis for informed decisions about whether and how to coordinate strategies to increase citizen bargaining power. It also allows decisionmaking to move beyond narrow community interests to interests that are representative of the city, district or regional levels. While such examples of "scaling up" are usually dependent on local initiatives, they may also be facilitated in various ways by the state. A concrete example of this relates to the Mexican government's provision of transport to allow peasants from different local areas to meet together (Evans, 1996b). Decisions to use state 220

resources for the "scaling up" of local organisations is of course dependent upon recognition of the benefits that can accrue from it, and an understanding of development processes within the social capital perspective could certainly contribute to this recognition.

Free download from

Scaling up and fostering cross-cutting ties It is for reasons like those discussed above that the concept of scaling up has begun to assume increasing importance within the social capital debate. Evans, for example, concedes that stocks of social capital are important to the creation of synergy, but believes that the key issue involves "scaling up", the move from parochial identities to more encompassing forms of organisation that are politically and economically efficacious. Scaling up allows for the horizontal exchange of experiences and opinions, helps to overcome barriers to the identification of shared problems, potential allies and opponents, and therefore to co-ordinated strategies which increase citizen bargaining power (Fox, 1996a). In addition to increasing the power of local communities, scaling up can have a number of benefits for the development process in general. For example, it allows for greater economies of scale, increases the possibilities of intersectoral collaboration, provides for larger pools of skills from which development projects can draw. It may also allow for the employment of permanent, paid staff in place of unpaid volunteers, and can significantly decrease the travelling costs of development agents (Hagg, Emmett & Marais, 1999:64-65). Scaling up may also attract greater political and financial resources, allow for the recruitment of better-trained managers, and create access to technical support. All of these have the potential to impact positively on the effectiveness and sustainability of development projects. While the concept of scaling up has for the most part been applied to linking communities with common problems and shared interests, it also has potential in other situations in which common interests are not so obvious. For example, poor working class communities might find common cause with affluent middle class communities if both are threatened by pollution from the same industrial plant, and find common grounds for co-operation while their interests are opposed in other respects. Even in those cases where the interests of communities appear to be diametrically opposed, such as between adjacent squatter and formally housed communities, social interaction between formerly isolated communities can produce mutually beneficial outcomes (Emmett, 1992). A further advantage of scaling up is that it allows communities to transcend primary relationships and fosters the development of cross-cutting ties or bridging social capital. The social capital literature points to a number of ways in which cross-cutting ties can produce political and economic benefits. Besides helping communities (and individuals) to transcend narrow and exclusionary identities, cross-cutting ties can open up new opportunities for access to information, material resources and opportunities to participate more fully in economic and political activities. Crosscutting ties also have the potential to empower communities through the recognition of common interests with other communities and groups and common political mobilisation. Involvement in local government represents just one of these opportunities. Scaling up and fostering cross-cutting ties are clearly related to one another in that scaling up involves the creation of cross-cutting ties on a systematic basis, Various strategies have been proposed for fostering cross-cutting ties. Narayan (1999:3843), for example, identifies the following seven mechanisms: 221

Free download from


Information; The free flow of information is essential for creating equal opportunity, building consensus, and keeping the state accountable. In particular information about employment and investment opportunities is important to counteract the isolation of excluded or marginalised groups. The information revolution has opened up many new possibilities for making information accessible to formerly marginalised groups. In Bangladesh, for example, a programme sponsored by Grameen Telecom has provided cell phones to poor, landless women, giving them "the power to connect people to relatives, friends or businesses anywhere in the world" (Narayan, 1999:39)


Inclusive participation; "Citizen voice, participation and representation of all social groups in state decision-making generate consensus, trust and social learning" and also help to keep the state accountable.


Conflict management mechanisms: Conflict management (including the justice system) is critical to the creation of socially cohesive societies in which people feel secure and are willing to invest. Interventions should not only be reactive, but proactive preventing conflict and not just resolving it. An important strategy in conflict prevention is to increase social interaction among groups that previously had little to do with one another. The state also has an important role to play in providing social and economic safety nets to protect families in times of violence and transition.


Education and values: Because of the long periods that children and youth spend in educational institutions, schools play a critical role in socialisation, and especially the promotion of values relating to nationhood, citizenship, ethics, tolerance and mutual respect.


Economic restructuring: Economic restructuring such as the construction of large dams or the development of large housing schemes, can lead to the displacement of large numbers of people. "Unless careful attention is paid to the existing Social institutions, even nominally redistributive programmes may reinforce current or create new social and economic cleavages.” (Narayan, 1999:42)


Governance and decentralisation: Narayan (1999:42) argues that in order for decentralisation to lead to more accountable government, mechanisms have to be put in place to ensure the two-way flow of information between local governments and citizens. This would include mechanisms that channel information about government resources, programmes and performance to citizens, as well as mechanisms through which citizens can convey their preferences to local government. The tendency in decentralisation has been to focus on the creation of devolved state structures rather than on the society in which these new structures function.


Demand-oriented delivery; Co-operation between the state and civil society in the delivery of services "creates synergy and complementarily in the management of local public resources", as well as contributing to sustainability. A demand-oriented approach to delivery usually requires fundamental changes in the missions, roles, values and indicators of success of delivery agencies.


Addressing inequality In the context of recent research findings that link social capital and crime to inequality, building social capital without addressing inequality would be like treating the symptoms of an illness rather than its causes. As Braithwaite (cited by Kennedy et al.,1998:15) concluded, programmes that simply target the poor would not have a significant impact on overall crime rates in society. Rather it is necessary to implement gross economic measures to reduce the gap between the poor and the rest of the population:

Free download from

This view runs against the conventional violence prevention wisdom which usually only targets high risk individuals and groups rather than attempting to shift the underlying societal forces that give rise to a high incidence of violence in the population (Kennedy et al., 1998:15). While it is beyond the scope of this book to explore macro-economic policies to address inequality in South Africa, the argument developed here does provide support (from an unexpected quarter) for government policies aimed at addressing inequality in the country. The need to address the underlying causes of inequality, however, does not necessarily make attempts to build social capital in poor communities irrelevant or redundant, While we still have a great deal to learn about the intricacies of the relationship between inequality, social capital and crime, current knowledge of social capital suggests that we may be dealing with a chicken and egg problem. While inequality may erode social capital, low stocks of social capital in poor and socially devastated communities represent one of the dimensions of inequality itself. In other words, deficiencies in the social capital of poor communities is but one of the disadvantages that prevent poor communities from securing a fairer share for themselves. Building the social capital of such communities can therefore strengthen their capacities to address other needs (e,g. economic and human capital) and close the gap between them and more privileged communities.

Getting to grips with crime and violence in South Africa: Some basic principles and guidelines This book has covered a broad range of themes and issues relating to the proactive and long-term prevention of crime and violence. To conclude this final chapter therefore we highlight a number of key principles that could be used to guide a new approach to crime and violence prevention in South Africa. These principles may also serve as a summary of the major findings of the study and provide a map to the more detailed material in the text.


The need for long-term strategies

A central argument of this book has been that, besides addressing the immediate problems of crime and violence in South Africa, we also need long-term strategies for addressing the underlying causes of crime. Such strategies need to be proactive and have to transcend the limited foci of the criminal justice system and the protective (rather than preventative) strategies of civil society.



A knowledge-based approach to crime and violence

Free download from

In keeping with the public health approach there is a need to transcend the limitations of ideological and emotive interpretations of crime and apply scientificallybased principles in the search for more effective means for fighting crime and violence. In particular, greater resources need to be invested in the rigorous evaluation of crime prevention projects and strategies. In the final analysis, crime prevention should be defined by results, not intentions or methods. Recent international research findings have challenged many of the entrenched public attitudes to crime and crime prevention For example, there is little evidence •

that continuing policies of increased incarceration will have a major impact on crime;

that increasing the size of the police force or improving their response time will significantly reduce crime;

and that community-based programmes such as neighbourhood watch can make an impact on crime in poor areas.

There is therefore a need for systematic scientific evaluation of crime prevention strategies in order to determine which work and which do not. Particularly in South Africa, where research resources are limited, there is a need for greater financial inputs into evaluation research, as well as for the strategic management of research funds.


Prevention should be based on the analysis of risk factors

A prominent feature of the scientific approach to prevention is the analysis of risk factors as a basis for the development of prevention strategies. This focus on risk factors is not only supported by the scientific evidence, but also makes provision for a broad perspective which takes into account perpetrators, victims and contextual factors. The analysis of risk factors also focuses attention on the areas in which crime is most concentrated and the social groups that are most at risk as both perpetrators and victims of crime and violence.


A more comprehensive approach to crime prevention

This book consistently stresses the need for more comprehensive approaches to crime and violence protection. The need for comprehensiveness occurs on different levels, including the following: •

Using a diversity of prevention strategies, e.g. educational, behavioural, environmental, legal and enforcement

Addressing injury prevention on the primary, secondary and tertiary levels

Using mufti-disciplinary approaches to understanding and preventing crime

Involving different sectors in crime prevention

Focusing on victims, perpetrators and contexts


Addressing both crime and the fear of crime

Paying attention to both the problems and the settings of crime and violence

Addressing crime and violence on the levels of the individual, social groups, communities and society

Thinking about crime in terms of both prevention and safety promotion.

The point of comprehensiveness is not to use as many strategies as possible, but rather to determine which strategy or combinations of strategies would be most effective.

Free download from

5 Safety promotion versus crime and injury prevention The ways in which we think about problems influence the kinds of solutions we create to address them. This applies to both crime and injury prevention, which are seen in the negative terms of a nuisance that needs to be removed or constrained. A more positive approach is to think in terms of safety as a value that needs to be promoted or preserved. According to Maurice et al. (1997:5-6) the emphasis on crime and injury prevention has various negative consequences: •

It partitions initiatives and agencies according to the kinds of problems they address.

It ignores the fact that problems are often as interrelated as their solutions.

It isolates interveners and their enterprises from one another.

It decreases the efficiency of initiatives and jeopardises the emergence of global solutions.

In order to address these constraints, Maurice et al, (1997) have proposed a model of safety promotion that combines a "problem-orientation" with a "settingorientation". The latter provides for addressing a range of related problems within a specific location and the development of more global solutions.

6 Crime and unintentional injuries An important feature of the public health approach is that it has an integrated approach to intentional and unintentional injuries. The very concept of safety promotion is premised on an integrated approach to prevention that takes into account not only those threats to safety associated with crime and violence, but also unintentional threats such as traffic accidents. While at first glance there may appear to be clear differences between intentional and unintentional injuries, the division between the two forms of injury is often blurred. As pointed out in Chapter 3, most traffic accidents causing death or serious injury involve criminal or traffic offences. There is also a tendency in societies to exercise legal control over behaviours and artefacts that often lead to injuries. It is therefore an offence to drive without a seatbelt, and there are various laws governing the possession and use of firearms. Intentional and unintentional injuries often share common causes and risk factors. An obvious example is alcohol abuse, which is strongly associated with both interpersonal violence and a broad range of unintentional injuries such as traffic 225

accidents, drownings, etc. It is also quite common for specific segments of the population (such as the youth, the aged and poor and disadvantaged people) to be exposed to greater risk of both intentional and unintentional injuries. In many instances this is associated with common risk factors (e.g. risk-taking behaviours of the youth or frailty of the aged) that increase the probability of injury from both sources.

Free download from

There are therefore clear advantages to dealing with intentional and unintentional injuries in an integrated manner. Not only does an integrated approach allow for a more holistic view of safety issues and for more integrated prevention strategies, but it also allows one to explore interactions between different risk factors. An integrated approach to the two sources of injury has the added advantage of supporting more caring attitudes in society and a respect for life. Because intentional and unintentional injuries both involve a threat to life, it is inconsistent to care about violent crime, but not, for example, about the carnage on the roads. This is particularly so in those situations in which people perceive crime as a threat to themselves, but unintentional injuries as a threat to others less fortunate than themselves.


7 The importance of social and institutional factors In understanding and preventing crime, we need to give more attention to social and institutional issues, and in particular to the informal social controls that families, communities, schools and labour markets play in controlling crime and violence. This is particularly important in South Africa where colonialism, apartheid and racial inequality have severely eroded the social fabric of poor and historically disadvantaged communities. We need also to gain a better understanding of the implications for crime prevention when key institutions like the family and the community break down, and why crime is so often concentrated in specific communities. We need to move beyond a narrow focus on the criminal justice system in order to address crime prevention at other institutional levels such as communities, families, schools and labour markets. This is because •

Crime prevention strategies may only be effective within institutional contexts that are strong enough to support them;

Families, communities, schools, churches and work contexts discourage crime by creating commitments to conventional life patterns that would be endangered by crime;

The effectiveness of the criminal justice system often depends upon the community, family, and labour market contexts into which the offender returns;

There is strong agreement among both scholars and policy makers that a stable family life, with consistently disciplined children and supportive communities are the best antidotes against crime and violence.


8 Targeting high-crime communities and families The concentration of crime in communities that have undergone severe social disintegration suggests that it is necessary to target such communities for comprehensive interventions that not only address policing, but also community building. Similar conditions apply to families where risk factors are concentrated, and this emphasises the need for interventions (such as home visitation programmes) for high-risk families.

Free download from

9 Inter-sectoral co-ordination and comprehensiveness More comprehensive programmes that address the social disintegration of communities and families are required in South Africa. While the causes or risk factors of serious crime are basic and interconnected, community programmes that have tried to address crime are generally superficial and piecemeal. In this regard, there is a need to distinguish between intersectoral co-ordination and comprehensiveness. The involvement of many different agencies in a programme does not necessarily secure comprehensiveness. Comprehensive programmes can be implemented by a single agency. Co-ordination is not an end in itself but a means of achieving comprehensiveness or efficiency. Furthermore, intergovernmental coordination cannot simply be commanded from above, but also needs to be driven from below and supported with incentives, skills and commitment. There is also a need to build "bridges" between programmes and across organisations that can support common goals. Co-ordination is as much a product of interaction, bargaining and negotiation among autonomous organisations, as it is of policy and central direction.

10 Training professionals for crime and violence prevention In the medium and long term, the effectiveness of crime prevention will in large measure depend upon the appropriate training of professionals. Training is not only needed for those professions which are directly involved in crime and violence prevention, but also those professions that are less obviously involved. Health workers provide a good example in that they often have more contact with victims of violence than do the police and courts. Furthermore, they are often better placed than police officers to obtain the co-operation of victims, particularly those who have been subjected to domestic violence, sexual assault and rape. This suggests that health personnel, together with the police, courts and welfare services, can play a crucial role in the identification, intervention in and prevention of violence, but would require appropriate training. The training of professionals can also play a crucial role in providing a firmer basis for mufti-disciplinary and mufti-sectoral co-operation and co-ordination

11 The limits of community-based interventions International research and some of the findings of this study suggest that conventional community-based crime prevention strategies seldom work in poor and socially devastated communities. In particular, the evidence shows that by itself community mobilisation is ineffective against crime in poor communities. There is also consistent evidence that neighbourhood watch programmes are least likely to


succeed in poor neighbourhoods where crime is most rampant, levels of distrust are high, and where risk factors for crime and violence proliferate. In such communities community-based interventions need to be bolstered by resources and support from agencies outside the community.

12 School-based crime prevention While schools have considerable potential for crime prevention, those schools that are most in need of interventions are often overwhelmed by crime in the communities that surround them. Such schools also require external support if they are to succeed in decreasing criminal and violent behaviour.

Free download from

13 The importance of early intervention The case study on the MRC's National Trauma Research Programme clearly shows that patterns of violent behaviour are set before people reach their teens and that intervention strategies have to take this into account. This is particularly important because both local and international crime statistics indicate a high involvement of youth in violence. Within the school context interventions can more appropriately be applied at the primary rather than the secondary level. The international evidence shows that the earlier family risk factors are addressed, the better. Programmes for infants and young children may be most cost-effective in the long run, even if they are expensive in the short term. In particular, consensus is strong on the effectiveness of home visitation programmes (similar to the programmes of the Parent Centre) which research shows to be one of "the most promising ... [interventions] in all areas of crime prevention' (Sherman, 1996f:2). Family problems, and especially family violence by adults, are also more difficult to address later in life. Research shows that being abused or neglected as a child substantially increases a person's risk for arrest and for involvement in violent crime later in life.

14 Transcending the individual There is a tendency in conventional approaches to crime and injury prevention to focus on the individual and changing individual behaviours, at the expense of addressing the social causes of crime and violence. Our case studies and international research findings show that crime and violence can more effectively be addressed by working on different social levels, and by using a diversity of strategies. For example, Frankish et al. (1993:119) reached the following conclusions after an extensive review of injury prevention among the indigenous populations of North America: •

Interventions that are limited to changing individual behaviours do not have a sustained impact on preventing or decreasing the occurrence of injuries.

The use of individual-specific behaviour-change projects is most effective when coupled with other strategies such as surveillance, enforcement and legislative strategies.

The most successful attempts to decrease the occurrence of the most serious injuries have involved modifying the environment.


15 Addressing the effects of crime It is not only necessary to address the causes of crime, but also its effects. Among the negative effects of crime that require urgent attention in South Africa are the fear of crime and social isolation as a protective strategy against crime. The findings of our community case studies suggest that South Africans hand in particular those living in poor and crime-ridden areas) are increasingly resorting to social isolation as a strategy to protect themselves from crime. The indications are that these tendencies towards withdrawal, passivity and powerlessness are under present circumstances likely to increase rather than decrease. Not only do strategies need to be developed to counteract the fear of crime and social isolation, but these issues need to be taken into account in the design and implementation of anti-crime strategies. For example, planners and architects need to transcend the narrow focus on designing protective measures to keep out crime, and need to make provision for social needs for interaction, trust and the building of community.

Free download from

16 Social disintegration and social capital issues There is a clear need for more concerted and innovative thinking about the problems of social disintegration and social capital, particularly in South Africa where the size of the problem is overwhelming and research into these issues has been largely neglected. The results of the community studies suggest that not only does social disintegration (or the lack of social capital) place obstacles in the way of crime prevention in poor communities, but also that crime may be further eroding the limited stocks of social capital in these communities. The international literature and the case studies provide several pointers for the development of new solutions. The case study of the KwaZulu-Natal Programme for Survivors of Violence, for example, offers some insights into how the individually oriented strategies of clinical psychology can be applied to the problems of social disintegration. There also appears to be considerable potential in "vertical" approaches to community mobilisation that emphasise the linkages between community life and decisions made at higher levels of power, rather than approaches which require community members to solve their own problems. Linked to the idea of "vertical" strategies of community mobilisation, are development strategies that seek to harness potential synergies in the relationships between state and civil society. Of particular interest in this regard is the strategy of "scaling up" existing social capital to create organisations that are sufficiently encompassing to pursue development goals effectively and reduce costs by capitalising on economies of scale. Strategies for building social capital are being developed at both the micro and macro levels. Such strategies require not only investing in the organisational capacity of the poor (as the asset-based approach advocates), but also changes in rules and laws at the macro level to support associational activity. .It is possible for governments to create enabling environments that Lower the costs of collective action while increasing the payoffs. Governments need not only to reduce disincentives for participation, but also to create positive incentives by encouraging both the reality and perception that citizen action can influence important government decisions through greater transparency and accountability at all levels of government. Various strategies have also been developed for generating greater trust between officials and the public. Among the most promising strategies for building social capital are scaling up and the development of cross-cutting ties. Scaling up allows for the horizontal exchange of information, experiences and opinions, helps to overcome barriers to the 229

identification of shared problems, potential allies and opponents, and therefore to coordinated strategies which increase citizen bargaining power. Cross-cutting ties help communities (and individuals) to transcend narrow and exclusionary identities and can open up new opportunities for access to information, material resources and opportunities to participate more fully in economic and political activities. Crosscutting ties also have the potential to empower communities through the recognition of common interests with other communities and groups and promote common political mobilisation. Both scaling up and cross-cutting ties can be encouraged through the free flow of information, more inclusive participation, conflict management, educational strategies, and emphasis on demand-oriented delivery which encourages co-operation between the state and civil society.

Free download from

17 Addressing inequality While there would appear to be various potential strategies for building social capital in South Africa, in the final analysis the gross inequalities in our society will have to be addressed if we are to make significant headway in building social capital and preventing crime and violence in the long term.

References ADLER, P.S.1999. Social capital: the good, The bad and the ugly. Available online at; http:// ARON, R. 1970. Main currents of sociological Thought 2. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. ASMAL, K. 1999. Call to action! Mobilising citizens to build a South African education and training system for the 21st century. Pretoria: Department of Education, 27 July. BUSHWAY, S. & REUTER, P.1996, Labor markets and crime risk factors. In: SHERMAN, L,W, GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P, & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime; what works, what doesn't, what's promising, A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at Butchart, A.,1996. Violence prevention in Gauteng: the public health approach. Acta Criminologica, 9(2). COLEMAN, J.S.,1988. Social capital in the creation of human capital. American Journal of Sociology, 94:S95-S120, The University of Chicago. COLEMAN, J.S., 1990. Foundations of social Theory. The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, UK. ECK, J. 1996. Preventing crime at places. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S.,1996. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at


EDWARDS, M. 1999. Enthusiasts, tacticians and sceptics: the World Bank, civil society and social capital. Available online at: library/edwards.htm. EMMETT, T. 1992. Squatting in the Hottentots Holland Basin: Perspectives on a South African Social Issue. HSRC. EVANS, P. 1996a. Introduction: Development strategies across the public-private divide. World Development, 24(b): 1033-1037. EVANS, P. 1996b. Government action, social capital and development: Reviewing the evidence on synergy. World Development, 24(b): 1119-1132.

Free download from

FOX, J.1996a. Local governance and citizen participation: Social capital formation and enabling policy environments. Paper presented at the Second International Ford Foundation Workshop on Local Governance, Manila. FOX, J. 1996b. How does civil society thicken? The political construction of social capital in rural Mexico. World Development, 24(6): 1089-1103. FRANKISH, C.J. (ed.),1993. Final Report; Injury prevention projects with native populations: a review and critique of the literature, Institute of Health Promotion Research, University of British Columbia. FRIEDMAN, S., 1998. The problem with policy. CPS Policy Brief No 1. Johannesburg: Centre for Policy Studies, April. FUKUYAMA, F.1995. Trust: The social values and the creation of prosperity. New York: Free Press. GITTELL, R. & VIDAL, A. 1998. Community Organizing: Building Social Capital as a Development Strategy. Sage Publications. GOTTFREDSON D. 1996. School-based crime prevention. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at GöTZ, G. & WHITE, G. 1997. Family therapy? Rethinking intergovernmental relations. Transition Series, Johannesburg: Centre for Policy Studies. GRANOVETTER, M. 1973. The strength of weak ties. American Journal of Sociology, 78:1360-1380. GRANOVETTER, M.S. 1978. The Strength of Weak Ties. American Journal of Sociology, 78(6). GROOTAERT, C. 1998. Social capital: The missing link? SCI Working Paper, no. 3, April, Washington: World Bank.


HAGG, G., EMMETT, A.B. & MARAIS, J.1998. Cost-effective implementation of sustainable community water supply services; An investigation into the policies and implementation strategies of the Mvula Trust, Phase .2. Pretoria: Human Sciences Research Council. KAWACHI, L, KENNEDY, B.P. & LOCHNER, K.1999. Long live community: social capital as public health. World Bank Social Capital Library. Available online at http:// wbln0018.worldbank,org/prm/af80485266840000b3367OpenDocument. KENNEDY, B.P., KAWACHI, L, PROTHROW-STITH, D., LOCHNER, K. & GUPTA, V. 1998. Social capital, income inequality, and firearm violent crime. Social Science and Medicine, 47(1):7-17.

Free download from

KRAHN, H., HARTNAGEL, T.F. & GARTRELL, J.W. 1986. Income inequality and homocide rates: cross-national data and criminological theories. Criminology, 24:269-295. KRETZMANN, J.P. & McKNIGHT, J.L. 1993. Building communities from the inside out; A path towards finding and mobilizing a community's assets. Chicago: ACTA Publications. MACKENZIE, D. L. 1996. Criminal justice and crime prevention. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime; what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at MAY, J. Poverty and Inequality in South Africa. Report prepared for the Office of the Executive Deputy President and the Inter-Ministerial Committee for Poverty and Inequality. MILLNER, J.,1997. Crime or development: Who calls the shots? Panos Media Briefing, 26. Also available online at crime.htm. MOSER, C.O.N. 1998. The asset vulnerability framework: Reassessing urban poverty reduction strategies. World Development, 26(1): 1-19. NARAYAN, D.1999. Bonds and Bridges; Social Capital and Poverty. World Bank. NISBET, R.A.,1965. Makers of modern social science; Emile Durkheim. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall. PORTES, A. & LANDOLT, P.1997. The downside of social capital. The American Prospect, (May-June), 26(18-21):94. PUTNAM, R.D., 1993. Making democracy work: Civic traditions in modern Italy. Princeton, N.J : Princeton University Press. PUTNAM, R. 1995a. Bawling alone: America's declining social capital. Journal of Democracy, 6(1): 65-78. PUTNAM, R. 1996. The strange disappearance of civic America. American Prospect, Winter: 34-48. 232

PUTNAM, R.1993. The prosperous community - Social capital and public life. American Prospect, 13: 35-42. . Also [Online]. Available http://epnorg/prospect/13/13putn.htm. PUTZEL, J. I997. Accounting for the 'dark side' of social capital: reading Robert Putnam on democracy. Journal of International Development, 9(7):939-949. RAMPHELE, M., 1991. Social disintegration in the black community: Implications for transformation. Monitor, pp. 7-16. SHAW, M.1995a. Partners in crime? Crime, political transition and changing forms of policing control. Centre for Policy Studies, Johannesburg. SHAW, M. 1995b. Exploring a decade of crime. Crime and Conflict, 1, Autumn.

Free download from

SHAW, M. 1997. South Africa: crime in Transition. Occasional Paper No. 17, Institute for Security Studies, Halfway House. SHERMAN, L.W. 1996a. Preventing crime; an overview. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at SHERMAN, L.W. 1996b. Thinking about crime prevention. In; SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at SHERMAN, L.W. 1995c. Communities and crime prevention. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at http://www.ncjrs.arg/works. SHERMAN, L.W. 1996d. Policing for crime prevention. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at SHERMAN, L.W.1996e. Conclusions: the effectiveness of local crime prevention funding. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at SHERMAN, L.W. 1996f. School-based crime prevention. In: SHERMAN, L.W., GOTTFREDSON, D., MACKENZIE, D., ECK, J., REUTER, P. & BUSHWAY, S., 1996. Preventing crime: what works, what doesn't, what's promising. A report to the United States Congress, prepared for the National Institute of Justice. Also available online at 233

TENDLER, J. 1997. Good government in the tropics. Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press. WILKINSON, R.G. 1999a. Health, hierarchy and social anxiety. In: ADLER, N.E., MARMOT, M., McEWEN, B.S. & STEWART, J. (eds.), Socioeconomic status and health in industrial nations: social psychological and biological pathways. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 896:48-63. Also available online at: http://www.worldbank. org/poverty/scapital/library/wilkinson2.htm. WILKINSON, R.G. 1999b. Income inequality, social cohesion and health: clarifying the theory. International Journal of health services, 29(3):525-543.

Free download from

WITWER, M,B, & CRAWFORD, C.A.,1995. NIJ Research report. A co-ordinated approach to reducing family violence; Conference highlights. The National Institute of Justice and the American Medical Association. Also available online at txtfiles/redfam.txt. WOOLCOCK, M. 1997. Social, capital and economic development: A critical review. Theory and Society, 27:151-208. WOOLCOCK, M.1999. Managing risks, shocks, and opportunities in developing economies: the role of social capital. Available online at: Footnote 1


Although the NIJ report addresses crime prevention in the United States and has drawn most of its information from Western and industrialised countries, it nevertheless has relevance to South Africa. As the case studies have illustrated, there is very little rigorous evaluation research on crime prevention in South Africa. With the country's limited resources, this situation is unlikely to be rectified in the near future. The industrialised countries, on the other hand, have considerably greater resources for research than the developing countries. We are therefore forced to rely on research conducted in the industrialised countries to help guide our decision making within the specific contexts and conditions of South Africa. Findings from other countries should of course not be accepted uncritically, and wherever possible should be tested to determine whether interventions under South African conditions yield the same results as they have elsewhere. Butchart (1996:7) makes a similar point in relation to crime prevention in South Africa when he argues that "our attempted solutions are now indeed a part of the problem, and therefore we must develop novel prevention strategies which will operate in the spaces left untouched by these conventional approaches".


A possible explanation for this is that people who live in areas with high employment and marriage rates often have more to lose in terms of status and respect in both their work and community contexts.


Ramphele has been proved right on both empirical and theoretical grounds. Statistics do show an increase in crime since the beginning of the transition to democracy, and recent research also suggests that inequality has a more 234

Free download from

pronounced effect on homicide in more democratic countries (Krahn et al., 1986) 6

This is of course not always the case, as our case study of the KwaZulu-Natal Survivors of Violence Programme illustrated. Because of the extreme violence and social disruption in the province in the first half of the 1990s, many of the children who had suffered the worst effects of the violence were not in schools, and adjustments therefore had to be made in the programme to accommodate them.


For alternative definitions of social capital, see, for example, Narayan (1999:6) who defines social capital "as the norms and social relations embedded in the Social structures of society that enable people to co-ordinate action and achieve desired goals", or Fukuyama (1995: 10) who refers to "the ability of people to work together for common purposes in groups and organizations".


In his description of regions in Italy such as Calabria and Sicily where social capital and civic engagement are limited, Robert Putnam (1993:2) makes a clear connection between low social capital and lawlessness; "The very concept of citizenship is stunted there. Engagement in social and cultural associations is meager. From the point of view of the inhabitants, public affairs is someone else's business. Laws, almost everyone agrees, are made to be broken, but fearing others' lawlessness, everyone demands sterner discipline. Trapped in these interlocking vicious circles, nearly everyone feels powerless, exploited and unhappy.”


This was recognised by Coleman (1988) in his use of the Weberian concept of closure in relation to social capital.


The strength of ties consists of a "combination of the amount of time, the emotional intensity, the intimacy (mutual confiding), and the reciprocal services which characterize the tie” (Granovetter,1973:1361).


As Gotz and White (1997:20) have argued, the RDP office closed down because it "failed to provide the broad facilitative framework which would ensure that the RDP was reflected in the work of each line department".


Gotz and White (1997:35) put this well, when they state that the necessary reorientation of intergovernmental relations "might be induced from above, but will have to be driven from below”.


A further argument against the pessimistic view is that social capital not only facilitates co-operation, but is itself a product of co-operation (Brown & Ashman, 1996;1477). The asset-based approach (which is briefly discussed below) takes a similarly optimistic view by insisting that we should approach socially impoverished communities as a "half-full" glass rather than a "halfempty" glass.


The Community Policing Forums provide an example of a "vertical" strategy.


Since the popularisation of the concept of Social capital, social capital theory has increasingly influenced the community development debate in the US in general, and asset-based approaches to development in particular. The social 235

capital perspective has incorporated "the relatively recent focus in the community development field on'civic capacity' and 'community building' and reinforced the long-standing preference of practitioners and prominent national foundations for framing their community development activities in asset-based terms, that is, in terms of 'the capacity of communities to act' rather than to 'need" (Gittel & Vidal, 1998:14). In South Africa this problem of authoritarian enclaves is currently being addressed by the "Chapter 9" institutions such as the Human Rights Commission, gender commission and most recently the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities. The social capital framework provides a basis from which to understand, guide and legitimate the work of these commissions.


Similar attitudes seem to apply to domestic violence, which is seen as less of a threat because of its personal nature.

Free download from