[URBANTH-L]CFP: 'The City in South Asia'
Jonathan Shapiro Anjaria
janjaria at ucsc.edu
Thu Apr 10 13:20:35 EDT 2008
CFP: ‘The City in South Asia: Re-thinking subcontinental urbanism’
Colin McFarlane and Jonathan Anjaria
Durham University, UK and University of California, Santa Cruz, USA
Within the new scholarship on the city in South Asia, significant
questions relating to contemporary and historical urbanism in the
subcontinent remain unexplored. In part, gaps in scholarship on
urban South Asia are due to critical attention to processes
associated with globalization and neoliberalization at the expense of
other, less visible, phenomena. We believe that while it is laudable
that studies of transnational process brought the South Asian city
new academic prominence within and beyond the subcontinent, this has
overshadowed attention to diverse processes, including colonial and
postcolonial histories, national and subcontinental connections, and
everyday urban life, that comprise the distinctiveness of cities.
We seek papers for an edited volume with a major international
publisher on the city in South Asia in comparative perspective. To
date, South Asian urban studies privilege a handful of cities, and
one country—which overlooks the great diversity, as well as
commonalities, of urban experiences spanning the region. Thus, in
addition to papers on New Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore, we welcome
papers on lesser studied cities such as Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad,
Kathmandu and Dhaka. We believe that a fresh look at contemporary
changes in cities in South Asia requires careful consideration of the
specificity of the city, as well as a comparative perspective. In
this way, we approach comparison not simply as a method, but as a
mode of thought that can reshape the nature of urban theory.
Conceptually, we are interested in papers that suggest new ways of
thinking about the city in South Asia, move away from blanket terms
such as neoliberalism and globalization to explain processes of urban
reconfiguration, and/or critically investigate the novelty of
contemporary urban phenomena. For instance, we are interested in
contemporary and historical studies of street life, ‘encroachment’,
conflicts over infrastructural development, the politics of mobility,
the interwoven nature of ‘state’ and ‘society’, the uneven movement
of capital, and projects to create modern or bourgeois urban space.
We are also interested in papers on contestations over sanitation,
water, work, and housing, as well as explorations of cross-border
We welcome contributions from a variety of fields, including
anthropology, geography, sociology, urban studies, and history. While
the concerns of this volume suggest papers with a field-based
ethnographic approach, we are interested in work based on historical
and textual analysis as well.
Deadline: One page proposals should be sent to Colin McFarlane
(colin.mcfarlane at durham.ac.uk) and Jonathan Anjaria
(janjaria at ucsc.edu) by June 1, 2008.
First drafts are due by December 1, 2008, and should be no longer
that 8000 words (including notes and references).
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