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Territorialising homes: Prolonged and return burglaries in South Africa

Huigen, Brandaan; (2020) Territorialising homes: Prolonged and return burglaries in South Africa. African Security Review , 29 (3) pp. 225-241. 10.1080/10246029.2020.1826333. Green open access

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Abstract

This article draws on ethnographic data from South Africa to show that while burglaries may commonly be once-off incidents, many households are repeatedly victimised. In such situations, victims are retargeted and intimidated by the same burglars. Through two exemplary cases of middle- and lower-middle-income households, which are examples of ‘return’ and ‘prolonged’ burglaries, I illustrate that these burglaries are defined by four main characteristics: long duration, the targeted theft of possessions, remaining marks and the close proximity of burglars. I suggest that these burglaries are a way of laying claim to households through symbolic means, rather than physical confrontation. This has lasting social, emotional and financial repercussions for the victims. As relating to repeat-victimisation, burglaries deserve further attention from analysts.

Type: Article
Title: Territorialising homes: Prolonged and return burglaries in South Africa
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/10246029.2020.1826333
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/10246029.2020.1826333
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Domestic burglary; propertycrime; violence; symbols;repeat victimisation; South Africa
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Anthropology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10178616
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