Solo Cape Town gangsters forced to fend for themselves and use extreme violence
Dziewanski recently wrote a research paper examining how some Capetonian gangsters prefer their independence over traditional gang hierarchies.
In an article published on The Conversation, Dziewanski says these solo gangsters rely on extreme violence and dangerous risk-taking to survive and thrive in the notorious murder capital.
According to Dziewanski, it's rare for gangsters in Cape Town to fly solo. He calls these individuals “street virtuosos” and says they are the exception to the rule.
He argues that some gangsters choose to operate alone because "they don't want to be subsumed under the identity of a gang; or to take orders or to die for a flag or tattoo".
But these solo gangsters put themselves at great risk and they have to "master the art of killing" to fight alone among the city’s 130 estimated gangs, Dziewanski tells CapeTalk.
To put yourself in the ecology of violence in that way, you really have to be capable... you have to master the art of killing.Dariusz Dziewanski, Researcher - School of Oriental and African Studies at University of London
The vast majority of gang members will live in the turf that they defend or grew up in, but you do get some that jump gangs, others that fall out with their gangs, and then those exceptions to the rule who choose to stand alone.Dariusz Dziewanski, Researcher - School of Oriental and African Studies at University of London
Gangs have historically been linked to turf as protection mechanisms for communities or territories against outsiders and they still retain a lot of that linkage.Dariusz Dziewanski, Researcher - School of Oriental and African Studies at University of London
Except now territory or turf is not really focused on protecting the community, but rather it's focused on protecting profits... usually in exploitation of the community, but there are exceptions.Dariusz Dziewanski, Researcher - School of Oriental and African Studies at University of London
He says while gangs offer opportunities for income, protection, and empowerment, they perpetuate a cycle of violence and poverty in the Mother City.
Dziewanski is currently writing a book entitled Beyond the Street: Gang Exit in Cape Town. Read his article for The Conversation here.
Listen to the discussion on The Midday Report with Lester Kiewit:
ActionSA leader Herman Mashaba says papers have been filed to appeal the IEC's decision to rejected his party's application.Read More
The SIU found that Mkhululi Lukhele failed to exercise his responsibility in awarding certain PPE contracts to certain companies.Read More
Reproductive health service Marie Stopes helped nearly 50 patients terminate pregnancies over the phone during lockdown.Read More
Former Crime Intelligence boss Richard Mdluli was jailed for five years on Tuesday for assualt, intimidation and kidnapping.Read More
All the interviews from the BIG Breakfast Broadcast with Refilwe Moloto on "South African Tourism, Reimagined".Read More
The Western Cape's Head of Economic Development and Tourism Solly Fourie has encouraged small businesses to apply for the Covid-19 Business Relief Fund.Read More
Spatial Planning and Environment Mayco member at City of Cape Town Marian Nieuwoudt responds to criticisms of baboon protocols.Read More
The murder of Lieutenant Colonel Charl Kinnear has once again highlighted the issue of alleged corruption within the South African Police Service (SAPS).Read More
The biggest hits as chosen by one of Cape Town's best jazz saxophonists this Sunday from 10 amRead More
Tour operator and owner of Beyond the Vine Robbie Knoetze normally catered to international tourists visiting the Western Cape.Read More