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The Emergence of the South African Metropolis: Cities and Identities in the Twentieth Century

The Emergence of the South African Metropolis: Cities and Identities in the Twentieth Century

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Vivian Bickford-Smith
Cambridge University Press, 5/16/2016
EAN 9781107002937, ISBN10: 1107002931

Hardcover, 340 pages, 22.8 x 15.2 x 2 cm
Language: English

Focusing on South Africa's three main cities - Johannesburg, Cape Town, and Durban - this book explores South African urban history from the late nineteenth century onwards. In particular, it examines the metropolitan perceptions and experiences of both black and white South Africans, as well as those of visitors, especially visitors from Britain and North America. Drawing on a rich array of city histories, travel writing, novels, films, newspapers, radio and television programs, and oral histories, Vivian Bickford-Smith focuses on the consequences of the depictions of the South African metropolis and the 'slums' they contained, and especially on how senses of urban belonging and geography helped create and reinforce South African ethnicities and nationalisms. This ambitious and pioneering account, spanning more than a century, will be welcomed by scholars and students of African history, urban history, and historical geography.

1. Introduction
2. Inventing British cities in Africa
3. More Babylon than Birmingham?
4. Selling sunlit cities
5. Bitter cries and black Baudelaires
6. Remembrance of things past.