Any city is a product of politics and economics, organizations and people. Yet, the life experiences of women uprooted from its poorest quarters seldom inform urban resettlement plans.
In this ethnographic field study, Ramya Ramanath, Associate Professor at DePaul University, examines the lives of women displaced by slum clearance and relocated to the largest slum resettlement site in Asia. Through conversations with diverse women of different ages, levels of education, types of employment, marital status, ethnicity, caste, religion, and household make-up, Ramanath recounts how women negotiate a drastic change in environment, from makeshift housing in a park slum to ownership of a high-rise apartment in a posh Mumbai suburb. Each phase of their city lives reflects how women initiate change and disseminate a vision valuable to planners intent on urban and residential transformations. Ramanath urges the concerted engagement of residents in design, development, and evaluation of place-making processes in cities and within their own neighborhoods especially.
This book will interest scholars of public policy, women and gender studies, South Asian studies, and urban planning.