[CSH-CPR Urban Workshop #129 – ONLINE]
Peopling New Delhi: Conjugality and Urban History in the City (A. Sarcar)
Aprajita Sarcar (Centre de Sciences Humaines, Delhi)
Peopling New Delhi: Conjugality and Urban History in the City
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Image source: Aprajita Sarcar, 2011
Abstract: The first two decades (1950s to 1970s) of family planning in postcolonial India entailed building a material world for young married couples that instilled a desire to reduce birth rates. Nuclear families in New Delhi found visible manifestations of a specific form of modernity in the built environment around them. This paper will analyse the spatial politics of the everyday city such that the nuclear family unit becomes a site of desire for the capital city’s new settlers. Juxtaposing the archival paper trail with audiovisual media shows how the nuclear family became the cornerstone of economic modernisation and urban planning in India.
About the speakers: Aprajita Sarcar is a historian specialising in the postcolonial history of family planning in India. Her research interests span disciplines, including, inter alia, gender, urban histories, histories of health governance, and population control in Asia. She was initially trained as a journalist and completed her M. Phil in Social Medicine and Community Health from JNU and received her PhD from the Department of History, Queen’s University, Canada, where she examined the nuclear family in the backdrop of the urbanising cities within India. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Centre de Sciences Humaines, New Delhi.