Reimagining diversity in post-apartheid Observatory, Cape Town: a discourse analysis
The focus of the thesis is conceptually-based and problematizes the notion of a transformed society while addressing and evaluating its meaning in the multicultural post-apartheid neighbourhood of Observatory, Cape Town. Confluent concepts such as ‘multilingualism’, ‘hybridity’ and ‘community’ are discussed within the historical and contemporary context of a newly established democratic South Africa. Through a poststructuralist discourse analysis, the study endeavours to explore discourses of language and identity in the previously predominantly English-speaking community of Observatory. It is hoped that this research will build upon knowledge of inter alia social interaction, translocations and community membership, identity, language and integration in Observatory. Focus therefore rest on issues such as hybridity, identity options, translocal and transnational cultural flows, localization and globalization. All these issues fall under the broader theme of discourse of transformation and integration in multilingual spaces. The study strictly works within the framework of a qualitative approach with the focus resting on a discourse analysis of generated narratives supplied by informants during interviews and temporal and spatial descriptions of research sites. Arising from this study it is hoped that a deeper understanding of migration, transnational and transcultural flows, hybridity and identity will be reached. Critically, this study delves into two ‘new’ areas which subsume sociolinguistics, specifically semiotic landscape and place branding. Exploration into the appropriation of space by ‘newcomers’ and the subsequent reimaginings of space into place are of keen interest here. In this respect, this study aims at shedding light on recurrent, contesting and and new imaginings of diversity in post-apartheid living.