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date: 27 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter discusses the basic functions of street names, otherwise known as ‘odonyms’: their intimate link to the organization of space in towns and cities, as well as the important symbolic and meaningful role that street names play when assigned. It is also argued that in the case of a change of government, the primary function of street names regarding the organization of space, temporarily takes a back seat as the commemorative function of an event or an individual comes to the fore. The situation in South Africa regarding the ongoing renaming of street names in cities after the ANC government came into power in 1994 is illustrated.

Keywords: odonyms, geographical orientation, spatial domain, commemoration, decommemoration

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