COVID AND CUSTOM IN RURAL SOUTH AFRICA, culture, healthcare and the state

: Bank (L.) & Sharpley (N.)

R 350.00
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275pp., illus., maps, paperback, London, 2022


Leslie Bank and Nelly Sharpley on the impact of Covid-19 and the associated lockdown on rural lives in the former homeland of Transkei in South Africa.

"A devastating indictment of policy failures driven by arrogance and contempt toward “custom”, this remarkable study also provides an exceptionally revealing account of the changing social and cultural conditions of South Africa’s rural periphery. An important and deeply insightful book." James Ferguson, Susan S. and William H. Hindle Professor, School of Humanities and Sciences, Stanford University

"Bank and Sharpley show how the pandemic exacerbated inequality, cultural conflicts, power discrepancies and contested leadership in South Africa. An excellent book, well written and convincing in its analysis, and the detailed ethnography from the Eastern Cape is simply magnificent." Thomas Hylland Eriksen, Professor of Social Anthropology, University of Oslo

Leslie Bank is Professor and Deputy Executive Director at the Human Sciences Research Council in South Africa. He is also Adjunct Professor of Social Anthropology at Walter Sisulu University. His recent books include City of Broken Dreams and the edited collection, Migrant Labour After Apartheid: The inside story.

Medical sociologist Nelly Sharpley was Head of Social Sciences at Walter Sisulu University, and led Special Projects in the office of the Vice-chancellor.