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Order amoxicillin no prescription, I presented these arguments in a discussion paper to the workshop on “Citizenship, Civility, and Environmental Sustainability Across Urban Asia” at the Yale University Department of Anthropology in January 2009.

The Urban Turn in South Asia

Scholarly interest in Indian cities is still quite recent. Unlike with Western cities, where there is a well-developed critical and scholarly literature on contemporary urban transformations, there are very few historical or ethnographic studies of social and technological change in modern Indian cities. In the wake of Subaltern Studies, the reasons for these are increasingly clear to young social scientists and researchers attempting to understand urban politics, society and culture in India. On the one hand, the nationalist biases of postwar and postcolonial social science and area studies deemed the rural countryside a more authentic form of society, following the well-known Gandhian dictum about “the real India”. On the other hand, the universalist biases of urban policy and technical studies in postcolonial India rendered the city into an ahistorical object of state intervention and control, order amoxicillin no prescription. While a social science of the city retained an ancillary role in development work sponsored by the state, now demoted to more instrumental forms of research, “fact-finding” and data collection tied to the objectives of social work programmes, development plans, and state-sponsored policy research.


The contemporary interest in the city in South Asia can be located a period coextensive with two distinct historical moments: the liberalisation of the national economy, and the economic and cultural globalisation of the city in the past twenty years; and more recently, the aftermath of the communal violence and rioting which rocked the country in the early nineties, following the demolition of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya and the communal riots in Mumbai in 1992-3. Across India and the global academic network of South Asian academics and intellectuals, amoxicillin online cheap, much scholarship and commentary at the time was addressed to the religious violence and communal nationalism of the Hindu Right, and was dominated by concerns over the decline of liberal secularism in India, and specifically to the urban cultures of civic cosmpolitan in places such as Mumbai, Delhi, Ahmedabad, and other towns and cities where mass communal violence had repeatedly shattered the earlier confidence of liberal elites in India's official secularism. In Mumbai, the new scholarly and activist literature on the city, coming in the wake of the riots in 1992-1993 and the rise of the Shiv Sena and Bharatiya Janata Party to state power from 1995-1999, was concerned with the decline of the city's cosmpolitanism. The official name of the city was changed from “Bombay” to “Mumbai” in 1995 when the BJP and Sena formed the first non-Congress ministry in the history of the state of Maharashtra, of which Mumbai is both state capital and commercial-industrial centre. Order amoxicillin no prescription, The change of name, agonised over by the popular media and scholars of Mumbai and Maharashtra, became the basic trope of the new urban studies in Mumbai in the nineties. The celebrated cosmopolitan city of migrants and merchants had transformed into a violent and divided metropolis. How did Bombay become Mumbai?1


The answers to these questions were sought in the deindustrialisation of the urban economy, and communalisation of urban politics which were the most powerful forces shaping the city in eighties and early nineties.2 The horror over the communal violence and criminalisation of local politics in the city, tinged with the elite anxieties over the loss of the city's “cosmopolitanism”, combined with other specific practices of writing and reading the city, forming a powerful conjuncture from the late nineties to the present in which a vibrant milieu of city activists and intellectuals, Order amoxicillin from canada, urban designers and architects, cultural and media practitioners are debating the imagined and built environments of the city.


This “urban turn” has evolved differently in specific disciplines, genres, and discursive practices. Quite apart from the flurry of new publications by social scientists, journalists and activists on post-riot Mumbai, two other genres of work defined a new ways of seeing and understanding in the city in the context of globalisation. The invention of the urban heritage of Classic Bombay by architects, heritage and civic activists and urban elites3; and the production of the idea of Bollywood both in cinema as well as television, advertising, and as a generalised media culture4 signified complementary movements in the direction of understanding the history, culture, and environment of the city in the cosmopolitan terms of global history.


The invention of “Classic Bombay” has occured in the context of the globalisation of Indian cities in the past fifteen years, and the question of their increasing bourgeoisification5. Over the past decade in Mumbai, a debate on the changing industrial landscapes of the city has been articulated by trade unionists and activists, journalists and scholars, architects, urban planners and designers, and the business and policy-making community, order amoxicillin no prescription. This emerging discourse on the city has many been voiced around many inter-connected concerns — the shrinkage and closure of manufacturing industries in the city and suburbs; the “informalisation” of manufacturing production, and the increasing exploitation of migrant labourers, women and children in this new work regime of casual and contract labour, undermining the employment base and solidarity of the old working classes; the notorious instances of high-income gentrification in former working-class neighbourhoods and industrial districts like the Mill Lands6; as well as the fears of the “death” of the city with the flight of its industries, its declining quality of life, environmental degradation and overburdened infrastructure, New Mexico NM N.Mex. , and its questionable prospects for future economic growth7.

The Theory of the “Global City”

All of these desires and anxieties about the city’s employment base and its changing economy, its spatial and social transformations in the two decades since the Bombay Textile Strike in 1981–2, have condensed into an ambiguous local discourse which accounts many of these complex changes to an overarching process of “globalisation”. To take a position on any of these issues means to also take a position on globalisation, understood as the sign of the Mumbai’s present and its future. However, no specific understanding of “globalisation” has been sought, and often ideology and rhetoric have filled the gap left by the lack of rigorous analysis of the various processes listed above. Where public criticism has emerged, it has tended to narrowly focus on symbols of a much larger process which is poorly understood. Order amoxicillin no prescription, Hence the fixation on consumerist symbols like shopping malls, five-star hotels, multiplex cinemas, gentirifed and converted factories and mills, and gated elite enclaves and ticketed zones of leisure. This narrow empirical focus on the outward features of changes seen in every city in the world which ignores a wider urban context where the basic means of work and livelihood have been specifically transformed over time and across space. In a way, this anti-globalisation rhetoric lends support to the elite fantasy of turning Mumbai into a global node for high-end services and finance, an Indian Singapore or Hong Kong8 which it targets by participating in its monumental and superficial vision.


In the academic industry, the number of theoretical arguments, disciplinary perspectives, and discourses on globalisation and the city have feverishly multiplied in the past decade. However, Acquistare a buon mercato amoxicillin, neither the recent literature on global cities, nor the earlier research on the post-industrial society, has taken seriously the particular location of cities like Mumbai in the process of the production of space of global capital. In her well-known study, Saskia Sassen has posited as a point of departure the combination of spatial dispersal of manufacturing and the global integration of services and finance which “has created a new strategic role for major cities”. Her study of the parallel changes in the economic base, spatial organisation and social structure of London, New York and Tokyo asks how cities with such different histories and cultures could experience such a similar transformation in a relatively short period of time, order amoxicillin no prescription. “To understand the puzzle of parallel change in diverse cities requires not simply a point-by-point comparison of New York, London, and Tokyo, but a situating of these cities in a set of global processes”, examining how different cities have responded to the same dynamic. She however warns that “the term global city may be reductive and misleading if it suggests that cities are mere outcomes of a global economic machine. They are specific places whose spaces, internal dynamics, and social structure matter; indeed, we may be able to understand the global order only by analyzing why key structures of the world economy are necessarily situated in cities”.9


Most of the debate on global cities neglects the importance of locality: how the abstract space of global capital is made into living places by real people, through their search for livelihood and their struggles for survival. The process of restructuring is both social as well as spatial, and the social forms of Mumbai as a global city cannot be understood without reference to its spatial forms, cheap amoxicillin online without prescription. Order amoxicillin no prescription, In this essay I explore how the complex spatial and social dynamics of Bombay’s industrial landscapes in the eighties and nineties are the backdrop against which global economic processes are restructuring the city’s economic geography. These local transformations were largely set in motion in the era before the structural adjustment and liberalisation policies in the nineties.


The classic theory of the global city, conceptualised by sociologist Saskia Sassen in her study of London, Tokyo and New York in the eighties, based itself on the integration of financial markets and producer services which occurred in these key world centres. While subsequent studies have emphasised the global natures of these flows and concentrations in other cities in an emerging global economy, recent attempts at describing Mumbai as a global city have assimilated the city's specific social and market forms, spatial and cultural practices, and political formations into another instance in the inevitable march of the economy. Thus the analysis of global politics and culture in Mumbai often misses the forest for the trees – focussing on the transformation of elite producer services such as call centres, business process outsourcing (BPOs) and high-end finance and information industries which employ less than 5% of the city's population and constitute tiny (but growing) global enclaves within most Indian metropolises. The effort at describing Mumbai as a global city in terms of expanding elite consumption and employment opportunities ultimately founders in an ahistorical and flat understanding of contemporary politics and culture in the city.

Urban Housing as Material Culture

How can we orient ourselves towards a comparative historical anthropology of housing in modern Mumbai. It is useful to state what we should not do, order amoxicillin no prescription. A comparative study of world cities should not neglect the specific spatial, social and economic conditions in which globalisation as a process is embedded and directed in a city like Mumbai. Nor should it treat “globalisation” in the same manner as an earlier generation of theorists and policy-makers regarded “modernisation”.


Rather than an inevitable process of “transition” from one stage of “development” to another, higher stage, we must see globalisation a contingent set of processes which articulate within determinate historical conditions. While global cities of the North in the seventies and eighties experienced an economic restructuring in which finance capital and producer services entirely displaced manufacturing industries, global cities in the South experienced a similar deindustrialisation, Cheap amoxicillin no prescription, without an accompanying concentration of finance and producer services industries in the contemporary period. While India developed in a classical colonial dependent condition, by the eighties, India was an autarkic economy, existing outside of global financial markets for at least another twenty years, until the liberalisation in the mid-nineties (though India remained largely isolated from the 1997 Asian financial crisis). Order amoxicillin no prescription, In mega-cities like Mumbai, the dissolution of large manufacturing industries in the eighties, and growth of new elite-oriented service economies in the nineties, instead elevated the construction industry and land speculation into the primary circuits of cash and capital accumulation in the city. It is to property, land and housing markets that we must turn for a theory of global cities in the South.


The generic forms of housing design and construction, finance and ownership, and domestic culture by which millions of people in Indian cities live their everyday lives has still not been treated as a serious subject of social or cultural history in India. Classical urban planning practice was historically premised on the segregation of the functions of modern urban life into residential, commercial/industrial, and public spheres, and their centralised location governed by state directives. However, Asian cities have constantly demonstrate the falsity of this separation of functions — with their vast districts of dense, mixed-use settlements governed by porous legalities, popular politics, and tactical negotiations over space and survival. This vast and complex economy has been inadequately imagined as the Third World 'slum' or theorised as the ‘informal economy’, ostaa halvalla amoxicillin. With the retreat of the state, centralised planning practice and its technocratic spatial imagination has been appropriated into a new spatial regime in which a predatory class of private builders dominates the production of formal housing for a minority of the rich, amidst rising inequality in access to housing and basic services for the majority of the urban poor in Mumbai.


Western and modernist approaches to architecture, urban design and planning treated urban housing as a place of residence, domesticity, and leisure — as a privileged site of social relations, and a prized object of consumption, order amoxicillin no prescription. However, a greater understanding of the cultural history of Asian cities must situate urban housing as a key unit of production in the urban economy, the material grid and medium through which everyday politics and culture are experienced. While a functional and economic separation of home and workplace is a central tenet of modern urban spatial practice, in Asian cities like Mumbai this false spatial division poses severe obstacles to situating the production of housing as part of the larger 'informal' economy of small scale manufacturing, casual labour, and flexible employment which defines the urban landscape for the majority of the urban poor. While the Asian city is famous for its rich local geographies and exotic cultural mixes, we need more detailed studies and analyses of the cultural history of housing in Asian cities — both as a material technology and as a social practice. The tactics and negotiations of urban poor communities in the context of Mumbai's contemporary housing crisis indicate a new form of urban politics whose future directions will be articulated by a historical understanding of the production of urban housing as material culture in the Asia Pacific.


Simultaneous to the informalisation of labour and housing markets in the eighties and nineties, the past twenty years have witnessed the decisive end of attempts at state-centred urban planning in Mumbai. Order amoxicillin no prescription, The post-Independence Development Plan, which had guided land, housing, and economic growth since the sixties, has been displaced in favour of piecemeal investments in infrastructure and transport, and housing and slum rehabilitation by the state, with increased participation from private builders and agencies. With the retreat of the state from its ambitious agendas of rational land-use, equitable distribution of services, and protection of the environment, the instruments of abstract spatial planning used by the state have withered and mutated into new urban forms marked by severe exclusions and enclosures.


Modern discourses on space and the city have problematised and represented the informal, casual, or slum housing in primarily moral terms. In Jacob Riis’s classic works, Florida FL Fla. , the production of housing and the blight of slum conditions is situated in a wider critique of the endemic urban corruption produced by the Tammany Hall political machine in antebellum New York City. How did this late nineteenth century imagination of the slum as both moral panic and reformist impulse become transformed into the late twentieth century symbol of the slum as a sign of underdevelopment, both in Third World mega-cities and Western inner-cities. The presence of the urban poor and working classs in large numbers has always been regarded as repugnant and dangerous to urban elites in all modern industrial cities, and it is little wonder that their forms of housing, hygiene and communal living were treated as the most visible symbol of a wider social or political crisis. But the image of the Third World slum, while borrowing from the century-old polemic of Riis, and the generation of civic reformers, urban sociologists, and community activists who followed him, has a special resonance in the era of globalised markets and media, order amoxicillin no prescription. In the paranoid nightmare of urban warfare projected by defence planners prior to the invasion of Iraq, or in the abortive Mogadishu landing by U.S. Marines ten years earlier portrayed the film “Black Hawk Down”, or even in the dystopic vision of urban theorists for whom the future urban world is the planet of slums, the dark alleys of the overcrowded Third World city – with their even darker inhabitants – condenses the negative fantasy of poverty, crime, violence and delinquency.


While this imagery are mobilised within the global media towards particular ends often not directly connected with the urban poor, within India their articulation is continuous with an elite minority's attempts to direct the commerce, labour and mobility of the majority of the urban poor into circuits of capital accumulation often outside prevailing legal and financial regimes. What we have called “predatory urbanism” is this new regime of speculative accumulation, legal exclusion, and the mass violence against the urban poor. The valorisation of the middle-class home and over-consumption in the urban media has its parallel in the marginalisation of the majority of the urban poor from land and housing — some 60% of the urban population of around 14 million citizens. Order amoxicillin no prescription, Secure housing is now the most desired object of consumption by all classes, from land-less squatters and working slum-dwellers to established tenants and the middle classes.

Historical Ecology of Ideas and Institutions in Mumbai

The new social and spatial relations of global Mumbai have given rise to various movements for housing and tenancy rights, which are now becoming the main arena for public politics. Borrowed from the natural sciences, comprar amoxicillin baratos, the concept “ecology” is used in the social sciences to analyse and explain the link between communities and their local environments. The concept can be used to describe the intellectual history of social movements and the non-state or non-governmental sector in Mumbai, their organisational forms, their use of different forms of knowledge, and the changing institutional, material, social and cultural environments in which these practices have evolved over the past twenty five years since the Emergency in India.



  1. Gandhian or nationalist “social work” organisations with an emphasis on a philosophy of national self-reliance and self-sufficiency, cottage industries and small-scale village and rural production models, whose strategies are non-violent protest and negotiation, and non-coercive dialogue; examples include Sarvodaya Mandal, and a host of cottage industries and small-scale cooperative industries;




  2. classical “social work” organisations working primarily with the health and education sectors, often with public sector, religious, Church and charitable funding; examples are many, they include the Nagpada Neighbourhood House, Nirmala Niketan School of Social Work, mobile creches, Cheap amoxicillin, organisations for the care of the marginalised, and so on;




  3. trade unions, and organisations associated with Left and radical social movements, whose focus is on the systemic inequalities and contradictions of capitalist society, whose strategies are ideological and political mobilisation and agitation for rights, resources, and power, mostly addressed to the state; examples include some affiliated and non-affiliated trade unions on the Left, especially those connected to the CPI and CPI (M), the Trade Union Solidarity Committee (TUSC), agitational groups and campaign networks, interest-based collectives such as Forum Against Oppression of Women, Left and Naxalite non-party and party formations;




  4. organisations associated with the post-Emergency civil liberties and democratic rights movements, now merging into newer global discourses on human rights, whose focus is on the violations of civil, political, economic and cultural rights of the “people”, and whose strategies are issue-based mobilisation, public interest litigation, and documentation or objective/scientific fact-finding around issues of rights violations; examples are Committee for the Protection of Democratic Rights (CPDR), köpa billiga amoxicillin, Lokshahi Hakk Sanghatana, Nivara Hakk Suraksha Samiti, Socio-Legal Information Centre (SLIC)/ India Centre for Human Rights and Law (ICHRL), YUVA, Majlis, and post-1992 mohalla committees;




  5. organisations involved in research activities, resource centres, or interest-based collectives, whose strategies are discussion, documentation and research work; examples are Centre for Education and Documentation (CED), SPARROW, Majlis, and documentation centres focussed on gender issues, such as Akshara and Vacha;




  6. organisations associated with international and global developmental practices, whose focus is on the assets and capital of the urban poor, where the discourse is of resources and not rights, and whose strategies are negotiation with state and non-state authorities, “empowerment” of the poor through provision of services and increased participation in governance; examples are Youth for Unity and Voluntary Action (YUVA), Michigan MI Mich. , Society for Promotion of Area Resource Centres (SPARC), many other mainstream NGOs;




  7. organisations which have sprung from civic grievances of the middle-classes and elites conceived exclusively as “citizens”, emphasising such issues as quality of life, noise and air pollution, provision of civic services and the perceived inefficiency and politicisation of these services, global competitiveness of the city as an corporate investment destination, whose strategies are negotiation and campaigning with the state authorities through the bureaucracy, elite media, private sector, and often collusion in state violence against the poor; examples are Association for Good Governance and Networking in India (AGNI), Bombay First, Citizens Forum for Protection of Public Spaces (Citispace), Colaba-Cuffe Parade, Pedder Road and other “middle-class” residents' associations.




REFERENCES

1Sujata Patel and Alice Thorner, eds., Bombay: Metaphor for Modern India. Delhi: Oxford University Press India, 1995 and Bombay: Mosaic of Modern Culture. Delhi: Oxford University Press India, 1995; and Sujata Patel and Jim Masselos, eds., Bombay and Mumbai: The City in Transition, order amoxicillin no prescription. Delhi: Oxford University Press India, 2003


2Darryl D'Monte, Pennsylvania PA Penn. , Ripping the Fabric: The Decline of Mumbai and its Mills. New Delhi: Oxford University Press India, 2002


3Rahul Mehrotra and Sharda Dwivedi, Bombay: The Cities Within. Bombay: India Book House Limited, 1995 and Pauline Rohtagi, Pheroza Godrej and Rahul Mehrotra, eds., Bombay to Mumbai: Changing Perspectives. Mumbai: MARG Publications, 1997.


4Ashish Rajadhyaksha, “The 'Bollywoodisation' of the Indian Cinema: Cultural Nationalism in a Global Arena” in Preben Kaarsholm, ed. City Flicks: Indian Cinema and the Urban Experience Order amoxicillin no prescription, , Calcutta: Seagull Books, 2004, pp.113-139.


5Partha Chatterjee, “Are Indian Cities Becoming Bourgeois At Last. (or, if you prefer, we could exclaim, Koop korting amoxicillin, 'Are Indian Cities Becoming Bourgeois, Alas?') in Indira Chandrashekhar and Peter Seel, eds. body.city: Siting Contemporary Culture in India, Berlin: Haus der Kulturen der Welt and Delhi: Tulika Books, 2003, pp.171-185.


6Shekhar Krishnan, Murder of the Mills: A Case Study of Phoenix Mills. Mumbai: Lokshahi Hakk Sanghatana and Girangaon Bachao Andolan, April 2000; Naresh Fernandes and Rochelle Pinto, Murder of the Mills: An Enquiry into Bombay’s Cotton Textile Industry and its Workers. Mumbai: Lokshahi Hakk Sanghatana, 1996


7Darryl D’Monte and Priyanka Kakodkar, “Bombay: The Death of Great City”, Cover Story, Outlook, Volume XLII, Kentucky KY Ky. , No.4, 4 February 2002.


8 For instance, see the lecture by V. Ranganathan, Chief Secretary to the Government of Maharashtra, on “Prospects for Development of Mumbai as a Leading Services Centre”, delivered to the Maharashtra Economic Development Council, 5 February 2002, http://www.medcindia.org


9Saskia Sassen, The Global City: New York, London and Tokyo, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991, pp.3-4

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