n Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology - Social capital, civility and compliance : theorising the social context of crime

Volume 17, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1012-8093



Social capital, it is argued, nurtures the connective tissue of trust and social cohesion, which is fundamental not only to the understanding of the origins of crime and disorder, but also to the prevention thereof. This article reflects on the conceptual and operational confines of the notion of social capital. It is a theoretical overview of the social capital discourse and suggests that the prevalence of social capital precedes both democratic consolidation and its correlate, civil society. In civil societies, crime and disorder are controlled and do not play a dominant role in the relationship between state and society.

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