Shoot to Kill: Police and Power in South Africa is a vivid and ambitious survey of the complex politics of security, crime and social control in South Africa. Nearly three decades after the formal end of apartheid, policing in South Africa continues to be defined by brutality, incompetence and corruption. Rather than protecting communities and ensuring justice for victims, the state and private security often enforce cruel wealth, racial and gender inequities. As our society becomes less safe and more divided, Shoot to Kill: Police and Power in South Africa asks how did the South African Police Service (SAPS) become this way and are they our best chance for safety?
From the slave-driver’s whip in the 18th century Cape Colony to the dystopian armoured vehicles of our present, this book traces the secret history of the police through colonial wars, apartheid atrocities and hyper-capitalist state capture. Featuring unapologetic critiques of elite power and the stifling politics of fear, while informed by global discussions on police abolition, Shoot to Kill: Police and Power in South Africa calls for a society based on democracy and justice. Author Christopher McMichael speaks to the realities of our world increasingly defined by militarised injustice and outlines ways we can escape from this rusty cage.
Available to order September 2022
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