There is much debate on what causes collective violence in South Africa. There is less focus on the other side of the coin: namely what contributes to preventing and mitigating violence. Yet every community has structures with the objective or mandate to resolve tensions and prevent violence, and many organisations carry out interventions with the explicit aim of building peaceful relations between groups. Since widespread violence targeted foreign nationals and other ‘outsiders’ in May 2008, there has been an increase in interventions aiming to build ‘social cohesion’ in communities where such violence took place.
Authors: Tamlyn Monson, Kathryn Takabvirwa, Jessica Anderson, Tara Polzer Ngwato and Iriann Freemantle