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ENCOUNTERS CONFLICT RESOLUTION Irrespective of scale and scope, conflict resolution is an on-going process, which rarely has a final closure. Through conflicts and conflict resolution, a society’s social norms as well as its inconsistencies and tensions are brought to the fore. While affording a platform for reducing collective anxieties and strife, conflict resolution might therefore expose hidden tensions and allow disputes to flare up with increased force and intensity. SQUARES Public squares are open spaces where members of a society meet outside the domain of their private homes. In sub-Saharan African communities based on face-to-face encounters, squares function as outdoor village halls, where disputes are resolved and decisions concerning the collective are made. In urban areas, squares also serve as a platform for publicly commenting on and criticizing incumbent power holders. In public square political messages can be communicated to a wide and often global audience. 155


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