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Historia

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Abstract

KEARNEY, Brian. "Keep your town sweet and wholesome" The inspector of nuisances: a narrative of culture and sanitation in nineteenth-century Durban. Historia [online]. 2012, vol.57, n.1, pp. 42-65. ISSN 0018-229X.

The nineteenth-century colonial town of Durban became a place where a growing British sanitation culture met headlong with the different attitudes of other urbanising people. The inspector of nuisances and the municipality's Sanitary Committee played a significant role in this context and tried to deal with a great variety of environmental problems. Some, such as overcrowded slums, led specifically to far-reaching consequences such as formal segregation policies. The inspectors were also concerned with many other types of nuisances including the need for hygiene; loafers and togt workers, barracks and compounds and the inspection of buildings. They played an important role in the development and refinement of urban services such as the night-soil system and the manufacture of fertilising manure.

Keywords : Durban; inspector of nuisances; Sanitary Committee; disease; overcrowding; poverty; segregation; locations; public nuisances; building inspections; collection and treatment of nightsoil; rubbish collection.

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