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From ‘Popcorn’ to ‘Occupy’: Protest in Durban, South Africa


  • Shauna Mottiar

  • I am very grateful to the editors and the anonymous reviewers for their valuable insights and suggestions.


Durban has a long tradition of activism and the creation of participatory spaces. The Umlazi Occupy is one example. In 2012 some 3,000 residents of Umlazi township ‘occupied’ the area outside the municipal councillor's office for the period of a month. The reasons behind the Occupy protest included demands for better services and higher levels of political accountability. This contribution examines the Umlazi Occupy with a focus on the nature of post-2010 activism and its key actors.