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Colonial policing and urban space in the notorious Commune Rouge of Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of Congo.


Year published: 2020
Categories: Articles

Author / Authors:

  • De Nys-Ketels, S.


Urban History, December 2020. doi: 10.1017/S0963926820000838.


Zooming in on the urban history of the Kenya neighbourhood in Lubumbashi, this article deals with the relation between urban space, colonial policing and African unrest. Colonial policy-makers feared the populous neighbourhood and its African masses, and deployed urban planning to materialize an ambiguous agenda of ‘welfare colonialism’ and discipline. The implementation of these planning projects was incomplete, and a spatial analysis of subsequent African local unrest, everyday colonial policing and military schemes sheds additional light on how colonial forces and Africans utilized urban space as a resource for protest and control. As such, the article aims to contribute to the academic debate on colonial policing, in which spatiality has been lacking.


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