Volume 42 Number 6
Published: November 7, 2011
This study analyses impacts of social discourses on the outcomes of social policy, through the narratives of female cash transfer recipients in Soweto, South Africa. Their understandings of poverty and welfare are related in complex and dynamic ways. Cash transfers are revealed as a tool of survival which helps to alleviate stigma associated with poverty. While recipients acknowledge that negative mainstream discourses on grant receipt are unjust, at the same time, they apply them to other recipients. We conclude that it is critical to support not only the material livelihoods of cash transfer recipients but also their human dignity, by investing in building rights‐based policy environments.