At a conference a few months back, a senior academic asked my panel – ‘How relevant do each one of you think is to study informality? Isn’t it an outdated/irrelevant term?’. I responded, rather unclearly. The unclear response has been refining in my mind. It was not the answer in itself, as I was quite clear of it, but the articulation of it via language. Thus, here is what I feel is a clear(er) articulation of what I think about research on informality.
From the heights of atrocities’ during the emergency to the post-liberal ‘projects’ of the world class city, nothing much has changed other than the cosmetic rhetoric as far as initiatives with the urban poor are concerned. The ‘IDEA of URBAN’ as conceptualised by the bourgeois urbanist is still what forms the core of urban initiatives.
Informal Settlements – Understanding + Interacting is an elective course (2013) for third year architecture students of Sushant School of Art and Architecture. Fifteen Students in three groups tried processes to interact and understand the informal settlements which steer away from the regular and formal analytical methods.
It is amazing to read about a phobia called Paruresis, how can someone have such a phobia which would not allow them to release themselves in public? Well it would be so good if this kind of a problem take roots in India. But Indian philosophy teaches us “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam“, which literally means the whole …