Rights discourse and practices, everyday violence and social protests: Who counts as subject and whose lives are real in the neo-colonial South African nation state? - pg.1.
This article seeks to illustrate the disjunction between the lived realities of marginalised, displaced and impoverished collective bodies in the neo-colonial South African nation state and the language, politics and practices of human or constitutional rights that represent them.
The article commences with a discussion of the relationship between neo-liberal capitalism, complex legal organisation and the rising number of social protests in South Africa. It focuses on the shack settlements on the edges of South African cities. Working from a theoretical position informed by Deleuze and Guattari’s machinic ontology, the author argues that collective assemblages of enunciation and machinic assemblages of desire produce the subject, and that the modernist legal construction of the subject “derealises” their suffering. The author further focuses on Deleuze and Guattari’s concepts of "minority", “majority” and “the State apparatus” to illustrate how collective bodies are captured, ordered and dealt with in legal and political processes, because they do not conform to the standard of the majority whereby the rights and duties of citizens are measured by the axioms of a capitalist society.