The Nightclubs Study

This research concerns social change in Long Street in Cape Town’s city centre. It examines forms of contact and segregation for which there currently exists very little data, focusing upon relations within the leisure spaces that constitute the city’s night time economy. Who frequents the network of bars, clubs, cafés and eateries that define this economy? Who do they come into contact with, how, and where? Who are they isolated from and what is the morphology of such isolation? How do they understand emerging patterns of racial contact and desegregation?

The nightclubs study is at an early stage of development. Some preliminary discussion of our observational findings is reported by Tredoux and Dixon (submitted). We are now analysing a set of follow up interviews, which were designed to explore ‘working models’ of contact and desegregation used by the patrons of Long Street’s night time economy.

The image below shows a Google Earth (satellite) view of Long Street, and the approximate location of the clubs we studied.