Notions of place and identity formation amongst recent graduates in South Africa: a case study of Umlazi Township.
Gumede, Mbonisi Luanda.
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The study sought to explore notions of place and identity formation amongst recent graduates in South Africa. It focused on the meaning graduates ascribed to places and why it is important for identity formation. Primarily, it sought to investigate recent black graduates’ place attachment and how these perceptions shaped their identity. The research study also examined the relationship between place attachment, sense of sense of place and belonging. Given the nature of the topic, data was gathered using qualitative methods. Data was collected from a sample of graduates from Umlazi Township in Durban. Results were analysed through the framework of place-identity and social identity theory and show that social and physical factors, sense of belonging, participation, community attachment, lower crime levels, accessibility and navigating contribute to higher levels of place/residential attachment. Findings point to the importance of social capital.