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“Mongrel City”: cosmopolitan neighbourliness in a Delhi squatter settlement

Datta, Ayona (2012) “Mongrel City”: cosmopolitan neighbourliness in a Delhi squatter settlement. Antipode: a Radical Journal of Geography, 44 (3). pp. 745-763. ISSN 0066-4812

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Abstract

This paper examines the construction of a "cosmopolitan neighbourliness" which emerges in a Delhi squatter settlement in the context of communal violence. Through interviews with over 80 inhabitants, I suggest that an openness to "others" in the settlement is produced in order to construct a home for oneself in an exclusionary city through a series of relational constructs-between the "cosmopolitan" city and the "parochial" village; between the "murderous" city and the "compassionate" slum; between the exclusionary urban public sphere and the "inclusive" neighbourhood sphere. The squatter settlement is internalised as a microcosm of a "mongrel city", a place which through its set of oppositional constructs becomes inherently "urban". "Cosmopolitan neighbourliness", however, remains fragile and gendered. It is a continuous strategic practice that attempts to bridge across differences of caste and religion through gendered performances that avert and discourage communal violence even when the city becomes murderous.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/(IS...
Additional Information: © 2012 John Wiley & Sons
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
Sets: Departments > Sociology
Research centres and groups > LSE Cities (Cities Programme)
Rights: http://www.lse.ac.uk/library/usingTheLibrary/academicSupport/OA/depositYourResearch.aspx
Date Deposited: 19 Sep 2011 15:39
URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/38291/

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