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Curating (im)mobility: peri-urban agency in the Lwandle Migrant Labour Museum

Kappler, Stefanie (2021) 'Curating (im)mobility: peri-urban agency in the Lwandle Migrant Labour Museum.', Global policy., 12 (S2). pp. 53-62.


This article focuses on the ways in which museums perform peri‐urban agency in urban peripheries. The latter are defined as meeting points between rural and urban economies and zones of transition and precariousness, shaped by intersectional inequalities. In South Africa, the experiences of migrant workers include governed (im)mobilities, living on the urban periphery and seeing the continuation of colonial practices in a neoliberal economic environment. A mnemonic reading of the ways in which migrant labour is interpreted and curated by the Lwandle Migrant Labour Museum near Cape Town reflects the extent to which the control of mobilities continues to operate in the country's post‐apartheid neoliberal system. The manner in which the museum curates the experience of migrant‐labour casts light on the performance of a particular form of peri‐urban agency as a way of interpreting the experience of migrant labour beyond Cape Town's city centre. Such agency is not free from contestation but instead an articulation of mnemonic agency in a post‐colonial political setting.

Item Type:Article
Full text:Publisher-imposed embargo until 23 June 2022.
(AM) Accepted Manuscript
File format - PDF
Publisher Web site:
Publisher statement:This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Kappler, Stefanie (2021). Curating (im)mobility: Peri-urban agency in the Lwandle Migrant Labour Museum. Global Policy 12(S2): 53-62., which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions.
Date accepted:04 May 2020
Date deposited:07 May 2020
Date of first online publication:23 June 2020
Date first made open access:23 June 2022

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